Books as Bodies and as Sacred Beings - James W Watts

Books as Bodies and as Sacred Beings - James W Watts

Books as Sacred Beings

Books as Bodies and as Sacred Beings - James W Watts

James W Watts [+-]
Syracuse University
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James W. Watts is Professor of Religion at Syracuse University. His publications include How and Why Books Matter: Essays on the Social Function of Iconic Texts (Equinox, 2019) and Understanding the Bible as a Scripture in History Culture and Religion (Wiley, 2021).

Description

The tendency of books to be ascribed agency like people and deities leads James Watts, in the last chapter, to explore why that is. Books manifest interiority like people: we speak of both as material containers for immaterial ideas. Books also generate common out-of-body experiences, they can be reproduced in multiple copies, and encountering them often changes us. Books are therefore material artifacts whose common use generates analogies that reinforce widespread hopes for bodily transcendence, resurrection or reincarnation, and theophany.

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Citation

Watts, James. Books as Sacred Beings. Books as Bodies and as Sacred Beings. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 137-149 Oct 2021. ISBN 9781781798850. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=38099. Date accessed: 22 Jan 2022 doi: 10.1558/equinox.38099. Oct 2021

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