18. Religion as a Species of Human Activity: A Response to Andie Alexander and Aaron Hughes

Thinking with J. Z. Smith - Mapping Methods in the Study of Religion - Barbara Krawcowicz

Willi Braun [+-]
University of Alberta
Willi Braun is a Professor Emeritus in the Department of History and Classics and the Program in Religious Studies at the University of Alberta, Canada. He is the former President of the North American Association for the Study of Religion and also the past President of the Canadian Society of Biblical Studies. Although a specialist in the writings and social formations of earliest Christianities in the Roman empire, his work also focuses on the methods and theories of the academic study of religion itself. He has published and presented his work widely and served as editor of a variety of books and journals, including his longtime role as editor of Method and Theory in the Study of Religion; most recently, he co-edited Reading J. Z. Smith: Interviews and Essay (Oxford, 2018).

Description

Willi Braun wrote a response to that podcast episode for The Religious Studies Project, which he has kindly edited and expanded for this volume. As he observes, “it remains lamentable that there are many scholars who seem not to read Smith’s work seriously. True, his writings and arguments are complex and difficult. I recall an old pronouncement by the classical Athenian orator and rhetorician, Isocrates: ‘The roots of education are bitter, but its fruit is sweet.’ The aphorism applies to the work, and it is work, of reading, thinking with and translating Smith for our students.”

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Citation

Braun, Willi. 18. Religion as a Species of Human Activity: A Response to Andie Alexander and Aaron Hughes. Thinking with J. Z. Smith - Mapping Methods in the Study of Religion. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. Oct 2023. ISBN 9781781799840. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=44399. Date accessed: 26 Nov 2022 doi: 10.1558/equinox.44399. Oct 2023

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