8. Perhaps (Not) Love…
Religion in Theory and Practice - Demystifying the Field for Burgeoning Scholars - Russell T. McCutcheon
Russell T. McCutcheon [+]
University of Alabama
This chapter, previously unpublished and originally delivered at a plenary session of the American Academy of Religion (AAR) that was devoted to the AAR President’s 2016 conference theme—“revolutionary love”—argues that the theme is yet another practical example of the ongoing identity crisis in the academic study of religion. Seeing love as a folk designation used by groups (of which scholars are, of course, members themselves) rather than an analytic category of research, the chapter argues that scholars (like any social agent) would do well not only to reflect on the many different personae or selves that they possess but also the various venues in which each is best operationalized.