Latest Issue: Vol 44, No 1 (2015) RSS2 logo

Bulletin for the Study of Religion

The Bulletin began life in 1971 as the CSSR Bulletin when it was published by the Council of Societies for the Study of Religion. In 2009 the Council disbanded and the journal moved to Equinox.

Historically the journal has published articles that address religion in general, the history of the field of religious studies, method and theory in the study of religion, and pedagogical practices. From 2010 (volume 39), the Bulletin is published in print and, for the first time, online, with a print frequency of 4 issues per volume.

The online edition includes supplemental content not appearing in the print version including interviews, book excerpts, blogs, and profiles of key thinkers in the study of religion. The new Bulletin also includes open access features and offers enhanced search and access functions across the full range of Equinox books and journals in religious studies, biblical studies, ethics and theology.

Publication Frequency (Print Edition)

Feb, April, September and November

ISSN: 2041-1863 (Print)

ISSN: 2041-1871 (Online)

Editorial Address

Philip Tite
c/o Equinox Publishing Ltd
Office 415, The Workstation
15 Paternoster Row
Sheffield, S1 2BX

Recent Blog Entries


How Far Does This Love Take Us?

by Sher Afgan Tareen The recent 5-4 ruling in Obergefell vs. Hodges raised Justice Anthony Kennedy to a venerable stature amongst those who vigorously celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision. In arguing why same sex marriage ought to be a constitutional … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-07-01More...

Better get to know Practicum: Critical Theory, Religion, and Pedagogy

Ipsita Chatterjea: Brad, Craig, thank you for taking the time to talk to the Bulletin for the Study of Religion Blog about your group and its work! Practicum observed its 1 year anniversary on April 26 2014. What is Practicum’s … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-29More...

Theses on Professionalization Series: Tenzan Eaghll

In this new feature with the Bulletin, we have asked 21 early career scholars to weigh in on Russell McCutcheon’s Theses on Professionalization, first published in 2007. In his 21 theses, McCutcheon offers advice to young scholars entering (or soon to enter) the … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-26More...

Making Sense—and Nonsense—of ‘Religious Terrorism’

by Simon Frankel Pratt One does not have to engage all that deeply with popular and academic conversations on terrorism before religion shows up. These days, and especially in the media, such conversations mainly consider one religion in particular, but … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-24More...

Profile Me: The Confederate Flag, Shame, and White Male Terror

by Donovan Schaefer Editor’s note: This post initially came out in response to the mass shooting at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in 2012. We are reposting it in the light of recent discussions about white terrorism, racism, and the … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-22More...

Trinkets from the Vatican Gift Shop

by Matt Sheedy On a recent trip to Florence and Rome (my first visit to both cities), I had the opportunity to take in some of the more popular sites, such as the Pitti Palace and the Roman Forum, along … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-17More...

Theses on Professionalization Series: Matthew W. Dougherty

In this new feature with the Bulletin, we have asked 21 early career scholars to weigh in on Russell McCutcheon’s Theses on Professionalization, first published in 2007. In his 21 theses, McCutcheon offers advice to young scholars entering (or soon … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-15More...

NASSR Notes: Robert Yelle

NAASR Notes is a feature with the Bulletin where we invite members of the North American Association for the Study of Religion to describe books they are reading and/or research and writing projects that will be of interests to scholars … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-12More...

On the Nature and Ends of Critique in the Study of Religion: Part Two

Edited by Craig Martin Recently Critical Research in Religion (CRR) posted an editorial titled “How Can Mainstream Approaches Become More Critical,” written by editors Warren S. Goldstein, Roland Boer, Rebekka King, and Jonathan Boyarin. The editorial identified four sites where critique could … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-10More...

On the Nature and Ends of Critique in the Study of Religion: Part One

Edited by Craig Martin Recently Critical Research in Religion (CRR) posted an editorial titled “How Can Mainstream Approaches Become More Critical,” written by editors Warren S. Goldstein, Roland Boer, Rebekka King, and Jonathan Boyarin. The editorial identified four sites where … Continue reading
Posted: 2015-06-08More...

Recent Articles


First as Sociology, Then as Geography: A Review Essay on Steven Sutcliffe and Ingvild Sælid Gilhus’s New Age Spiritualities: Rethinking Religion

This essay reviews Steven J. Sutcliffe and Ingvild Sælid Gilhus's New Age Spiritualities: Rethinking Religion. It shows that their attempt to redefine religion through new age spiritualities is actually an attempt to impose an economically elite social geography onto religious studies as a social fact. My central argument is that this effort in turn reveals that religious studies serves as a sociological factory for liberal economic ideologies. It suggests that to mitigate this ideological work, a shift toward critical geography in religious studies is the way forward.
Posted: 2015-02-19More...

What is a Superhero? How Myth Can be a Metacode

The essay argues that Marvel's Civil War is an interesting narrative concerning the superhero metacode at work. After a brief overview of the crossover event, its allegorical qualities will be discussed followed by a supplemental reading focusing on how superheroes, as agents of pretend play, come to be socialized, coded, and distributed across shared social networks.
Posted: 2015-02-18More...

Wasteland America: The United States in Premillennialist Apocalypse Scenarios

One of the more perplexing exegetical difficulties faced by adherents of American-style premillennialism has to do with the question of what role the United States will play in the coming apocalypse. Despite the nearness of the eschaton and the critical role that the United States is often said to play in foreshadowing it, the Mediterranean-based apocalypse scenario that lies at the heart of most premillennialist exegesis seems to leave little room for a strong U.S. presence at the end. In this article, I shall first survey various premillennialist attempts to account for this quandry before turning to my main argument: that premillennialism's very failure to find the U.S. within the pages of prophecy invests the nation with chameleon-like agency, freeing it from the fatalism often implied in apocalyptic speculation – and creating the possibility of a new political theology conceptualized within in the shadow of the end.
Posted: 2015-02-18More...

An Urgent Need to Consider How to Define Islamophobia

This short discussion article addresses both the problem/s of defining Islamophobia and the ways in which our definitions impact on how we see the world and by what method/s the social problem of Islamophobia is measured. Because of growing internal tensions among Muslims in the world and because of the politicised nature of Islam and Muslims in the West, we argue that there is a growing need to consider how Islamophobia should be defined.
Posted: 2015-02-17More...

Religion Clichés

Framed as a critique of a 1972 article by Ninian Smart, this essay seeks to expose some of the popular and academic clichés associated with the study of religion. Exploring the historical and philosophical context of clichés such as religion is the sacred or religion is about peace, the author suggests that the academic study of religion is intertwined with a series of essentializations that obscure the political context of the religious education. The essay is simultaneously an attempt to update the list of clichés first identified by Smart, and to expose the philosophical and political assumptions represented by the study of religion.
Posted: 2015-02-16More...

Most Viewed Articles


Current Trends in the Study of Early Christian Martyrdom

This paper investigate recent scholarship on early Christian martyrdom. It discusses the shift away from the study of the origins of martyrdom to an interest in martyrdom and the body, Christian identity formation, and martyrdom and orthodoxy. It further discusses the need for a reappraisal of the evidence for early Christian martyrdom and the renewed attention that questions of dating, authorship, and provenance have received.
Posted: 2012-08-12More...

Reinventing Religious Studies: An Interview with Scott Elliott

I interviewed Scott S. Elliott in December 2013, where we discussed his recent book (as editor) Reinventing Religious Studies: Key Writings in the History of a Discipline (Acumen 2013). Our conversation ranged from the history of the Council of Societies for the Study of Religion to how articles appearing in its journal, the CSSR Bulletin, over some 40-odd years have been at the leading edge of advancing debates in the study of religion, from problems in theory and method and the definition of religion, to issues of identity politics and the study of Islam.
Posted: 2014-03-05More...

Religion Snapshots: On the Uses of “Data”

Religion Snapshots is a new feature with the Bulletin for the Study of Religion blog, where a number of contributors are asked to briefly comment on popular news items or pressing theoretical issues in the field, especially those topics relating to definitions, classification and method and theory in the study of religion more generally. Below is one such roundtable discussion, focusing on the problematic notion of “data” in the study of religion. The editors of the Bulletin encourage readers to follow Religion Snapshots on our blog (and, of course, we welcome responses to the topics discussed by other scholars).
Posted: 2014-01-10More...

Queer Pedagogy and/in Religious Studies

An Introduction to the Special Issue of the Bulletin. The essays emerged out of a panel discussion co-sponsored by the “Queer Theory and LGBT Studies Consultation” and the “Teaching Religion Section” at the 2009 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Religion. Contributors were invited to produce reflections on teaching religion queerly, teaching religion as a queer thing, subverting conventional definitions of (the) discipline, and teaching religion outside of religious studies departments/programs, among other possible topics.
Posted: 2010-08-13More...

Romania’s Saving Angels: ”New Men”, Orthodoxy and Blood Mysticism in the Legionary Movement

In Romania, a Christian, ultranationalistic movement known as The Legionary Movement has before and after the Communist period called for a national, spritual revolution. Perceiving themselves as front fighters protected by the Archangel, Legionaries endeavour to purify the nation so that it can live in its God-given fatherland. In order to assure national resurrection, Legionaries want to create a “New Man”, understood as a new male. This ideal combines the qualities of a Christian martyr, a working hero, a monk and a militant and as such both complex and ambiguous. In practice, Legionaries have a lot in common with other European “boot boys”. Based on field studies, this article discusses the role of men in this movement: their role models, male bonding, rituals and myths, as well as their concepts of family, brotherhood and blood relations, all with reference to a particular ethnonationalistic, christocentric worldview.
Posted: 2012-03-15More...



Letter from the President, Council of Societies for the Study of Religion

Russell T. McCutcheon' s announcement that appeared in the September 2009 issue of the CSSR Bulletin  
Posted: 2009-10-07 More...
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