Varieties of Secularism in Asia: Anthropological Explorations of Religion, Politics and the Spiritual, (PDF) is an ethnographically rich, theoretically well-informed, and intellectually consistent volume which builds off the work of Talal Asad, Charles Taylor, and others who have engaged the issue of secularism(s) and in socio-political life. The volume aims to examine theories of secularism and explore concrete ethnographic cases in order to further the theoretical discussion.
Whereas Taylor’s magisterial work draws up the conditions and problems of a belief in God in Western modernity, it leaves unexamined the challenges posed by the spiritual in modernity outside of the North Atlantic rim. This anthology seeks to begin that task. It does so by suggesting that the kind of secularsim described by Taylor is only one amongst others. By attending to the changing relationship between proper religion and ‘bad faiths’; between politically valorised and embarrassing spiritual phenomena; between the new visibilities and silences of magic, ancestors, and religion in democratic politics, this ebook seeks to outline the particular formations of secularism that have become possible in Asia from China to Indonesia and from Bahrain to Timor-Leste.
This ebook will appeal to university students and scholars of Asian religion, politics and anthropology.
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