SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCE

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1


SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCE

COURSE GUIDE
201
1
/
2012

Anthropology

Level 5
AT5008 Religion, Power and Belief


Welcome to the School of Social Science!

T
his course guide gives information about the social science course you have chosen to study
.

It must be read in
conjunction with the School of Social Science Handbook, which is available on the web at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/course

and on
MyAberdeen
.
You should also look a
t the School of Social
Science General Information page on
MyAberdeen
.


MyAberdeen (the University of Aberdeen’s Virtual Learning Environment)


MyAberdeen replaces WebCT as students’ virtual learning environment. This is where you will find learning materi
als
and resources associated with the courses you are studying.


MyAberdeen also provides direct access to TurnitinUK, the online originality checking service, through which you may
be asked to submit completed assignments.


You can log in to MyAberdeen by

going to:
www.abdn.ac.uk/myaberdeen

and entering your University username and
password (which you use to access the University network).


Further information on MyAberdeen including Quick Guides and video tutorials, along with information about
TurnitinUK, can be found at:
www.abdn.ac.uk/students/myaberdeen.php


Information about
academic writing and how to avoid plagiarism can be found at:
www.abdn.ac.uk/sls/plagiarism


If you have any questions then you can ask

o

Your tuto
r (contact details will
be given to you at your first tuto
rial meeting)

o

The course co
-
ordinator

(contact details are given below)

o

The school officer (room F45 in Edward Wright Building, tel 27
-
2275; e
-
mail
socsci@abdn.ac.uk

or
pam.thomson@abdn.ac.uk

at

the School Office

o

At
room F
50

Edward Wright
B
uilding
.

Please check your university e
-
mail account regularly. If you decide to contact staff by e
-
mail, please write the message
carefully so that it is immediately clear who the me
ssage is from and what the issue is. You may find the advice given
on the web at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/email
-
guidance.php

helpful
.


Your timetable will be on your Student Portal. You will meet your course co
-
ordinator at the first lecture.

You will find

a number of useful links on the School website at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/course.php

and on
MyAberdeen
.



2

What you need to do now



Book a place on a tutorial slot (go to
:

https://www.abdn.ac.uk/MyCourses/
)

and note the day/week
numbers/time and
room.



Note your lecture times


day/time/week numbers/rooms



If you need additional help during your course or at exam time, contact
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/student
-
support/



If you would like help with
your
study, such as essay writing

techniques
, contact the Student Learning Service
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/sls/




Note your essay deadlines



Read the Student Handbook



Start the prescribed reading


Course Co
-
ordinator

The Course Co
-
ordinator for
AT5008

is
Dr Johan Rasanayagam

(Room:
G18
, Edward Wright Building; e
-
mail:
johan.rasanayagam
@abdn.ac.uk; tel: 27
-

2191
)
.
Meetings can be arranged by appointment.




Credit Rating

This course is offered in the
first

semester. It has a rating of
30

credit points
; that is, it is expected to take up
50
% of the
time of a full
-
time student.



Course Requirements and Assessment

Requirements

o

Satisfactory attendance at, and participation in, tutorials

o

Delivery of
at least
one tutorial presentation

o

Submission of
assessment
essay

by the relevant deadline.


Assessment

This course is assessed by
an essay of 5000 words
.

There is no set question for this essay. Students should think about what issues they would like to explore
through the
assessment, and in week 7 of the course will meet individually with the course coordinator to fix an appropriate title.

Essay deadline dates
:

5pm on

Wednesday 25 January

2012

If you fail to meet these requirements, we may remove you from the
course

by withdrawing your class certificate
.
The details of the School’s policy for enforcing requirements can be found in the Handbook a
t:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/course

or through
your portal,

and

the University’s procedures for monitoring
student progress are explained at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/registry/calendar/generalregulations

If you are having trouble
meeting our requirements, you must talk to your tutor or Course Co
-
ordinator.

Attendance
/progress monitoring

Set criteria are used to determine when a student should be reported in the monitoring system. You will be asked to
meet your Adviser and warned t
hat your class certificate is ‘at risk’ if


(i) you are absent from three tutorial meetings;


o
r


(ii) you fail to submit a piece of in
-
course assessment by the stated deadline

without a medical certificate or an agreed


extension.


If you
do not attend half or more of the tutorials for this course, even if the absence is for medical or other good cause,
then you cannot be deemed to have fulfilled the requirements of the course and your class certificate will be withdrawn.
This means that y
ou cannot sit the exam or the resit.

Full details about certification are available on the web at
:

www.abdn.ac.uk/registry/quality/appendix7x5.pdf



3

If you lose yo
ur class certificate and wish to appeal, you should contact your Course Co
-
ordinator.



Submission of assignments

Please hand in two copies of your essay to the School
O
ffice (F50) and submit it electronically through TurnitinUK (go
to
MyAberdeen

at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/students/myaberdeen.php



Your course work must be properly referenced. Instructions
are noted in the Student Handbook, on the web at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/sls/plagiarism
/

and on the School’s general information
MyAberdeen
page. Details will also

be
provided in the tutorials.



Essay presentation

For advice on essay presentation, see the
Good Writing Guides

on the web at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/course.php



Plagiarism and referencing

We expect what you submit as course work to be your own work. One way we try to ensure this is by requiring that
essays be submitted
to

TurnitinUK

via MyAberdeen:

http://www.abdn.ac.u./students/myaberdeen.php

TurnitinUK is an online service which compares student assignm
ents with online sources including web pages, databases
of reference material, and content previously submitted by other users across the UK.
The software makes no decision as
to whether plagiarism has occurred;

it is simply a tool which highlights section
s of text that have been found in other
sources thereby helping academic staff decide whether plagiarism has occurred.


As of Academic Year 2011/12, TurnitinUK will be accessed directly through MyAberdeen. Advice about avoiding
plagiarism, the University’s Definition of Plagiarism, a Checklist for Students, Referencing and Citing guidance, and
instructions for TurnitinUK ca
n be found in the following area of the Student Learning service website:
www.abdn.ac.uk/sls/plagiarism


We distinguish bet
ween bad practice and cheating. We do not tolerate students’
deliberately passi
ng off the work of
others as
their

own,
and will investigate any suspected cases. You must make sure you understand the rules and follow
the instructions given to you.


Self
-
Plagiarism

While it is entirely legitimate for you to pursue a particular
interest through the levels and courses of your degree, you
should not recycle assessed course work from one course to another, or from a taught course to a dissertation. Such
recycling is likely to attract a poor grade because:

o

Unless the questions are id
entical, work that answers one essay question well is likely to be poorly fitted or
even irrelevant to another;

o

Work that fits well within the requirements of one exercise (a short Level 1 essay for example) will fail to meet
the standard or level of detai
l required for a different exercise (a Level 4 essay or a dissertation, for example);

o

We expect students to progress through their years of study. A level of understanding that attracts a good grade
at Level 1 will be much less impressive at Level 3.


Gu
idance on approved referencing techniques can be found in the Good Writing Guides on the web at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/socsci/about/course.php

and on the library website at
:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/library/guides/gen/uggen007.pdf
.


The University defines plagiarism thus: ‘Plagiarism is the use, without adequate acknowledgment, of the intellectual work of
another person in work submitted for assessment. A student cannot be found to have committed plagiarism where it can be
shown that
the student has taken all reasonable care to avoid
representing the work of others as his or her own.’
(
University of
Aberdeen, Code of Practice on Student Discipline (revised
29 September 2010
) 2.1.1 (h). Available from:

http://www.abdn.ac.uk/registry/quality/appendix5x15.pdf
.

)


The University regards plagiarism as a serious offence. In extreme cases it can result in the student being removed
from the course.


Seminars

This course consists of 1 two hour seminar per week. These seminars are facilitated by the course coordinator, but are
student led. They are a forum for students themselves to discuss issues on the topic of the seminar on the basis of the
readings set each

week. As such, students need to read the texts in advance of the seminar to be able to contribute to the

4

discussion and debate. Each week one
or more
student
s

in the group will give a short presentation to introduce the
issues, which will be followed by a

group discussion. In some weeks, guest speakers will present their own research for
part of the
seminar.
Guidance for preparation for seminar discussions will be posted on
MyAberdeen
.


There is a core set of text
s

for each seminar, which all students shou
ld read in advance. These are
available

in the course
reader.
A more extensive list is provided in this guide.


Seminars

for this course take place on
Tuesday, 9.00
-
11.00 in
St Mary’s B27


In addition to these seminars, students are strongly encouraged to
attend the lectures on the topic of religion and politics
in the undergraduate programme for anthropology. These are:


AT2006 Anthropological approaches to religion (lecture: Tuesday 12.00
-
13.00 KCG7)

AT2005 Political Anthropology (lecture: Monday 10.00
-
11
.00 FN1)



COURSE PLAN

Course
week
number

University
teaching
timetabling week
number

(see final page of
guide)

Week
commencing



Topic

1

12

26/9/11

Introduction to the course

2

13

3/10/11

Religion as a social
phenomenon

3

14

10/10/11

Religion and
meaning:
worldview and perception

4

15

17/10/11

Ritual and performative effect

5

16

24/10/11

Ritual and the self

6

17

31/10/11

Ritual as political action

7

18

7/11/11

Political cosmologies

8

19

14/11//11

Vernacular politics

9

20

21/11/11

Focus on
Islam

10

21

28/11/11

The question of belief

11

22

5/12/11

Summary discussion

12

23

12/12/11

Essay topic presentations



Seminar

Outlines

Week

1

Introduction

to

the

course



Week

2

Religion

as

a

social

phenomenon

This
seminar

discusses Du
rkheim’s conception of society and his ideas on the nature of religion.
Durkheim has had a
profound influence on the discipline of anthropology
, in particular what became known as the British structural
functional school. Both Durkheim and the structural f
unctionalists took religion to be an essentially social phenomenon.
the seminar will also introduce the very different approach of cognitive anthropology, who argue that what we think of
as religion is a product of human cognitive processes.
The article by

Sarah Henning Davis in the reading list below
provides a

critique of
the cognitive

approach,
and

draws on Durkheim’
s ideas in interesting ways
.


Reading


On Durkheim:

Bellah, Robert (1973) Introduction to
Emile Durkhneim: On Morality and Society
ix
-
lv


5


Du
rkheim, Emile (1960)
The Rules of sociological Method

Translated by Sarah A. Solovay and John H. Mueller,
George E. G. Catlin (ed.) (The Free Press, New York) (Chapter 1)


Durkheim, Émile (1964)
The Division of Labor in Society

The Free Press, New York (bo
ok 1 ch. 6 and 7, Book 2 ch. 5
and conclusion)


Durkheim, Émile (1968) [1915]
The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life

(George Allen and Unwin Ltd., London)
(Especially book 2 chapter 7 and conclusion)


Durkheim, Emile (1973) [1914] ‘The Dualism of Human

Nature and its Social Conditions’ in R. Bellah (ed.) Emile
Durkheim: On Morality and Society (University of Chicago Press, Chicago) 149
-
163 Translated by Charles Blend


LaCapra, Dominick (1972)
Emile Durkheim: Sociologist and Philosopher

(Cornell Universi
ty Press, Ithaca) (Chapter 5)


Structural functionalist interpretations

Fortes, Meyer (1973) ‘On the Concept of the Person among the Tallensi’ in G. Dieterlen (ed.)
La Notion de la Personne
en Afrique Noire

(Editions du Centre National de la Recherche Scie
ntifique, Paris) 283
-
319


Middleton, John (1963) ‘Witchcraft and Sorcery in Lugbara’ in J. Middletion and E. H. Winter (eds.)
Witchcraft and
Sorcery in East Africa

(Routledge and Kegan Paul, London) 257
-
275


Nadel S. F. (1952) ‘Witchcraft in Four African Societies: An Essay in Comparison’ in
American Anthropologist

NS
Vol. 54(1) 18
-
29


Radcliffe
-
Brown, A. R. (1945) ‘Religion and Society’ in
The Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute of Great
Britain an
d Northern Ireland

75(1/2) 33
-
43


Radcliffe
-
Brown A. R. (1952)
Structure and Function in Primitive Society

(Cohen and West, London) (Chapters 9 &
10)


Cognitive approaches

Guthrie, Stewart Elliott (2007) ‘Anthropology and Anthropomorphism in Religion’ in H
arvey Whitehouse and James
Laidlaw (eds.)
Religion, Anthropology and Cognitive Science

(Carolina Academic Press, Durham) 37
-
62


Boyer, Pascal 1992 ‘Explaining Religious Ideas: Element s of a Cognitive Approach’
Numen

39(
1
) 27
-
57


Henning Davis, Sarah 2008. ‘What’s Not to Know? A Durkheimian Critique of Boyer’s Theory of Religion’
Ethos

36
(2) 268
-
281



Week

3

Religion

and

meaning:

worldview

and

perception

In this seminar we will explore religion though the concept of culture. Cliff
ord Geertz has been a major theorist in this
area. He sees culture as a symbolic system, a web of significance which gives meaning to experiential reality. The
seminar will discuss Geertz’s classic works on culture and how anthropologists can study it, his

idea of religion as a
cultural system, and his concepts of ethos and world view. We will go on to discuss more recent anthropological
analysis which explores how experience comes to take a particular form within local cosmologies. This seminar
introduces
a discussion of how we might think about reality and experience.


Reading


Geertz
on culture

Geertz, Clifford (1957) ‘Ritual and Social Change: A Javanese Example’
American Anthropologist
,

New Series

59(1)
32
-
54


Geertz, Clifford (1973)
The Interpretation

of Cultures

(Basic Books, New York) Chapter 1 ‘Thick Description: Toward
an Interpretive Theory of Culture’ 3
-
30


Geertz, Cliford (1973)
The Interpretation of Cultures

(Basic Books, New York) Chapter 4 ‘Religion as a Cultural
System’ 87
-
125


Geertz, Clifford (1973)
The Interpretation of Cultures

(Basic Books, New York) Chapter 5 ‘Ethos, World View, and the
Analysis of Sacred Symbols’ 126
-
141



6

Geertz, Clifford (2005) ‘
Shifting Aims, Moving Targets: on the Anthropology of Religion’ in
Journal of

the Royal
Anthropological Institute

(N.S.) Vol. 11(1) 1
-
15


Culture, cosmology and experience

Allerton, Catherine (2009) ‘Static Crosses and Working Spirits: Anti
-
Syncretism and Agricultural Animism in Catholic
West Flores’
Anthropological Forum

19(3) 271
-
87


Comaroff, Jean (1980) ‘Healing and the Cultural Order: The Case of the Barolong Boo Ratshidi of Southern Africa’ in
American Ethnologist

Vol. 7(4) 637
-
657


Porath, Nathan (2008) ‘Seeing Sound: Consciousness and Therapeutic Acoustics in the Inter
-
Senso
ry Shamanic
Epistemology of the Oran Sakai of Riau (Sumatra)’
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S.)

Vol. 14(3)
647
-
663


Roseman, Marina (1990) ‘Head, Heart, Odor, and Shadow: The Structure of the Self, the Emotional World, and Ritual
Perfor
mance among Senoi Temiar’ in
Ethos

18(3) 227
-
250


Wikan, Unni (1989) ‘Illness from Fright or Soul Loss: A North Balinese Culture
-
Bound Syndrome?’ in
Culture,
Medicine and Psychiatry

Vol. 13(1) 25
-
50



Week

4

Ritual

and

performative

effect

What do rituals do? Why do people participate in them? If we come from secular perspective, we tend to think of ritual
as ‘mere’ ritual, as a standard form or sequence of actions which might encode meaning, but do not actually ‘do’
anything in the real, ma
terial world.
This seminar explores how ritual might have real, material effects. We will also
discuss the performative nature of ritual. Ritual does not just encode mea
ning like a static text, but it
s performance can
produce states of being in the world.
This seminar sets us up for discussions in the following two weeks.


Reading


The efficacy of ritual

Comaroff, Jean (1985)
Body of Power Spirit of Resistance: The Culture and History of a South African People

(University of Chicago Press, Chicago)


Chapt
er
4


Endres, Kirsten W. 2008 ‘Engaging the Spirits of the Dead: Soul
-
Calling Rituals and the Performative Construction of
Efficacy’
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S.)

14(4) 755
-
773


Louw, Maria Elizabeth (2007)
Everyday Islam in
Post
-
Soviet Central Asia

(Routledge, London)

Chapter 8


Rappaport, Roy A. (1999)
Ritual and Religion in the Making of Humanity

(Cambridge University Press, Cambridge)


Chapter 4


Language and performance

Bloch, Maurice 1989 ‘
Symbols, song, dance and featu
res of articulation: Is religion an extreme form of traditional
authority’ in
Ritual, History and Power

(The Athlone Press, London) 19
-
45


Csordas, Thomas J. (1987) ‘Genre, Motive, and Metaphor: Conditions for Creativity in Ritual Language’ in
Cultural
Ant
hropology

Vol. 2(4) 445
-
469


Robbins, Joel 2001 'Ritual Communication and Linguistic Ideology: A Reading and Partial Reformulation of
Rappaport's Theory of Ritual'
Current Anthropology

42(5) 591
-

614


Tambiah, S. J. 1968 ‘The Magical Power of Words’ in
Man

New Series 3(2) 175
-
208



Week

5

Ritual

and

the

self

The focus for this week is subjectivity and the self. How do people develop a particular sense of self through ritual? We
will discuss how dispositions and desires, moral stances, and understandings of
what it means to be a good Muslim,
Christian or person are developed through ritual practice.


Reading


Boddy J. (1988) ‘Spirits and Selves in Northern Sudan: The Cultural Therapeutics of Possession and Trance’ in
American Ethnologist

Vol. 15(1) 4
-
27



7

Cso
rdas T. (1994)
The Sacred Self: A Cultural Phenomenology of Charismatic Healing

(University of California Press,
Berkeley)


Csordas, Thomas (1990) ‘Embodiment as a Paradigm for Anthropology’ in
Ethos

Vol. 18(1) 5
-
47


Harding, Susan F. (1987) ‘Convicted by the Holy Spirit: The Rhetoric of Fundamental Baptist Conversion’ in
American
Ethnologist

Vol. 14:1 167
-
181


Hirschkind C. (2001) ‘The Ethics of Listening: Cassette
-
Sermon Audition in Contemporary Egypt’ in
American
Et
hnologist

Vol. 28(3) 623
-
649


Kapferer, Bruce (1979) ‘Mind, Self, and Other in Demonic Illness: The Negation and Reconstruction of Self’ in
American Ethnologist

Vol. 6(1) 110
-
133


MacPhee M. (2003) ‘Medicine for the Heart: The Embodiment of Faith in Morocco’ in
Medical Anthropology
Vol. 22
53
-
83


Mahmood S. (2005)
Politics of Piety: The Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject
(Princeton University Press,
Princeton)


Mahmood, Saba (
2001) ‘Rehearsed Spontaneity and the Conventionality of Ritual: Disciplines of şalāt’ in
American
Ethnologist
Vol. 28(4) 827
-
853


Rasanayagam, Johan (2011)
Islam in Post
-
Soviet Uzbekistan: The Morality of Experience

(Cambridge University Press,
Cambridge)


chapter 6



Week

6

Ritual

as

political

action

How might ritual be a means or medium for political action? We will discuss how hegemony
and political domination
is
maintained through ritual practice, and
what we mean by hegemony. This seminar also explore
s ritual as a medium of
resistance and a means of constructing alternative worldviews and ideologies.


Reading

Death in Vietnam

Kwon, Heonik ‘The Ghosts of War and the Ethics of Memory’ in Michael Lambek (ed.) 2010
Ordinary Ethics:
Anthropology, Language, and Action
Fordham University Press, New York 400
-
413


Malarney, Shaun Kingsley 2007 'Festivals and the Dynamics of the Exceptional Dead in Northern Vietnam'
Journal of
Southeast Asian Studies

38(3) 515
-
540


Ritual,

hegemony and resistance


Bloch, Maurice (1986)
From Blessing to Violence: History and Ideology in the Circumcision Ritual of the Merina of
Madagascar

(Cambridge University Press, Cambridge)


Chapter 8


Bloch, Maurice 1989 ‘The Disconnection Between Power

and Rank as a Process: An Outline of the Development of
Kingdoms in Central Madagascar’ in
Ritual, History and Power: Selected Papers in Anthropology

(The Athlone Press,
London) 46
-
88


Comaroff, Jean (1985)
Body of Power Spirit of Resistance: The Culture
and History of a South African People

(University of Chicago Press, Chicago)


Chapter 7


Holmberg, David 2000 ‘Derision, Exorcism, and the Ritual Production of Power’
American Ethnologist

27(4) 927
-
949


McIntosh, Janet (2004) ‘Reluctant Muslims: Embodied Hegemony and Moral Resistance in a Giriama Spirit Possession
Complex’ in
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute
(N. S.) Vol. 10(1) 91
-
112



Week

7

Political

cosmologies

The discussion this week bl
urs the boundary we often assume to exist between politics and religion. We sometimes
think that the realm of politics is one of competition or conflict over resources and interests, while religion is concerned
with questions of ‘category’ and ‘ontology’,
such as the nature of the person, world and cosmos, and the relation of the
person to other human and non
-
human persons and the world. This seminar explores how political action and conflicts,
often involving the state, is located in cosmologies which prov
ide particular logics and possibilities for action.


Reading


8

Bellah, Robert N. 1967 ‘Civil Religion in America’
Daedalus
Winter 1967 (also Fall 2005 40
-
55) Reprinted in
Beyond
Belief: Essays on Religion in a Post
-
Traditionalist World

168
-
186


Burghart, Richard 1984 ‘The formation fo the Concept of the Nation
-
State in Nepal’
The Journal of Asian Studies
44(1)
101
-
125


Comaroff John L. and Comaroff Jean (1997) ‘Postcolonial Politics and Discourses of Democracy in Southern Africa: an
Anthropologic
al Reflection on African Political Modernities’ in
Journal of Anthropological Research

53(2) 123
-
146


Comaroff, John and Comaroff, Jean (1992)
Ethnography and the Historical Imagination

(Westview Press, Boulder)
Chapter 9 ‘The colonisation of consciousness



Kapferer, Bruce (1988)
Legends of People, Myths of State: Violence, Intolerance, and Political Culture in Sri Lanka
and Australia
(Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington) Chapters 1 and 4


Mills, M. (2009). 'This Circle of Kings: Modern Tibetan Visio
ns of World Peace'. in P Kirby (ed.),
Boundless Worlds.
An Anthropological Approach To Movement.
, Berghahn Books, New York, NY, USA, pp. 95
-
114.



Week

8

Vernacular

politics

In this seminar we will expand our understanding of the political beyond states,
parties and interest groups, to see how
the political extends to the intimacies of the everyday. We will discuss how ritual
and religion, as played out in the day
-
to
-
day flow of life, is an important site of the political.


Reading

Bubant, Nils (2006) ‘Sorcery, Corruption, and the Dangers of Democracy in Indonesia’ in
Journal of the Royal
Anthropological Institute

(N.S.) Vol. 12(2) 413
-
431


Froerer Peggy 2006 'Emphasising 'Others': The Emergence of Hindu Nationalism in a Central Indian Tribal
Community'
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S)

12(1) 39
-
59


Kapferer B. (2003) ‘Outside All Reason: Magic, Sorcery and Epistemology in
Anthropology’ Introduction to B.
Kapferer (ed.)
Beyond Rationalism: Rethinking Magic, Witchcraft and Sorcery

(Berghahn Books, New York) 1
-
30


Lattas, Andrew (1993) ‘Sorcery and Colonialism: Illness, Dreams and Death as Political Languages in West New
Brita
in’ in
Man

N.S. Vol. 28(1) 51
-
77


Meyer, Birgit (1998) ‘The Power of Money: Politics, Occult Forces, and Pentecostalism in Ghana’ in
African Studies
Review

Vol. 41(3) 15
-
37


Michelutti, Lucia 2007 ‘The Vernacularization of Democracy: Political Participatio
n and Popular Politics in North
India’
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S.)

13(3) 639
-
656


Mines Diane P. 2002 'Hindu Nationalism, Untouchable Reform, and the Ritual Production of a South Indian Village
American Ethnologist
29(1) 58
-
85



Week

9

Focus

on

Islam

During the course we have been exploring the intersection of religion and politics from a number of perspectives. In this
seminar, we will focus specifically on Islam. We will discuss alternative imaginaries of polity and modernity wi
thin an
Islamic frame, which provide alternatives to the Western ideal of the secular modern. We will also look at ritual as a
context for political action and for the development of pious, Muslim subjectivities.


Reading


Political cosmology

Ahmad, Irfan 2009 ‘Genealogy of the Islamic State: Reflections on Maududi’s Political Thought and Islamism’
Journal
of the Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S.)

S145
-
S162


Deeb, Lara (2006)
An Enchanted Modern: Gender and Public Piety in Shi‘i Lebanon

(Pr
inceton University Press,
Princeton)


Introduction


Qutb, Sayyid (1990)
Milestones

(American Trust Publications, Indianapolis) Translated by Ahmad Zaki Hammad


Starrett, Gregory (1995) ‘The Hexis of Interpretation: Islam and the Body in the Egyptian Popul
ar School’ in
American
Ethnologist
Vol. 22(4) 953
-
969


9


Piety and self

Deeb, Lara (2006)
An Enchanted Modern: Gender and Public Piety in Shi‘i Lebanon

(Princeton University Press,
Princeton)


Chapter 3


Huq, Maimuna 2009 ‘Talking
Jihad

and Piety: Reformist Exertions among Islamist Women in Bangladesh’
Journal of
the Royal Anthropological Institute

(N.S.)

S163
-
S182


Ritual practice

Bowen, John (1989) ‘
Salat

in Indonesia: The Social Meanings of an Islamic Ritual’ in
Man

(N.S.) Vol. 24(4)
600
-
619


Hegland, Mary Elaine 2003 Shi’a Women’s Rituals in Northwest Pakistan: The Shortcomings and Significance of
Resistance
Anthropological Quarterly
76(3) 411
-
442


Henkel, Heiko (2005) ‘Between Belief and Unbelief lies the Performance of Salāt: Meaning and Efficacy of a Muslim
Ritual’ in
Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute

(N.S) Vol. 11(3) 487
-
507


Simon, Gregory M. (2009) ‘The Soul Freed of Cares? Islamic

Prayer, Subjectivity, and the Contradictions of Moral
Selfhood in Minangkabau, Indonesia’ in
American Ethnologist
36(2) 258
-
275


Vernacular politics

Edgar, Iain (2006) ‘The ‘True Dream’ in Contemporary Islamic/Jihadist Dreamwork: A Case Study of the Dream
s of
Taliban Leader Mullah Omar’ in
Contemporary South Asia

Vol. 15(3) 263
-
272



Week

10

The

question

of

belief

Religion is often framed in terms of belief. It is the beliefs an individual holds about the divine or supernatural, the
cosmos and the place of

humans within it. As such, religion is thought of as something which shapes people’s actions
and attitudes. This seminar will critically discuss the notion of belief as a frame for what we might want to call religion
,
and also how we might approach
belief

as something other than interior thought, for example through
concepts of
embodiment and emotion, and phenomenological approaches.


Reading


Critiques of the concept of belief

Kirsch, Thomas G. (2004) ‘Restaging the Will to Believe: Religious Pluralism, Anti
-
Syncretism, and the Problem of
Belief’ in
American Anthropologist

Vol. 106(4) 699
-
709


Lambek, Michael (2008) ‘Provincializing God?: Provocations from an Anthropology of Religion’ in Hent de Vries (ed.)
Religion Beyond a Concept

(Fordham University Press, New York)


Lindquist, Galina and Coleman, Simon (2008) ‘Against Belief?’ in
Social Anal
ysis

Special Issue Vol. 52(1) 1
-
18


Needham, Rodney (1972)
Belief, Language and Experience

(Basil Blackwell, Oxford)


Ruel, Malcolm (1982) ‘Christians as Believers’ in J. Davis (ed.)
Religious Organization and Religious Experience

(Academic Press, London)

9
-
31


Stroeken, Koen (2008) ‘Believed Belief: Science/Religion versus Sukuma Magic’ in
Social Analysis
Special Issue Vol.
52(1) 144
-
165


Re
-
thinking belief

Desjarlais, Robert (1992)
Body and Emotion: The Aesthetics of Illness and Healing in the Nepal Hima
layas

(University
of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia)

Chapter 1 and 3


Harding, Susan F. (1987) ‘Convicted by the Holy Spirit: The Rhetoric of Fundamental Baptist Conversion’ in
American
Ethnologist

Vol. 14:1 167
-
181


Mitchell J. P. (1997) ‘A Moment with
Christ: The Importance of Feelings in the Analysis of Belief’ in Journal of the
Royal Anthropological Institute (N.S.) Vol. 3(1) 79
-
94



Week

11

Summary

discussion



Week

12

Essay

topic

presentations


10

SPACE MANAGEMENT (TEACHING TIMETABLING)
NEW

WEEK NUMBERS 2011
-
12

(OLD NUMBERING SYSTEM IN BRACKETS)



WEEK NO


DATE


NOTES

Week 1

11 July


15 July 2011


Week 2

18 July


22 July 2011


Week 3

25 July


29 July 2011

4
th

Year Medical Registration

Week 4

1 August


5 August 2011

August resit diet

starts Saturday 6

August

Week 5

8 August


12 August 2011

August Resit Exams

Week 6

15 August


19 August 2011

August Resit Exams

Week 7

22 August


26 August 2011

25


PGDE Registration

Week 8

29 August


2 September 2011

5
th

Year Medical Registration

Week 9

5 September


9 September 2011


Week 10

12 September


16 September 2011

3
rd

Year Medical Registration

Week 11

19 September


23 September 2011

Advising Week

Week 12 (1)

26 September


30 September 2011

COMMENCEMENT OF

TEACHING


1
st

HALF SESSION

Week 13 (2)

3 October


7 October 2011


Week 14 (3)

10 October


14 October 2011


Week 15 (4)

17 October


21 October 2011

PGDE


Reading Week

Week 16 (5)

24 October


28 October 2011


Week 17 (6)

31 October


4 November
2011


Week 18 (7)

7 November


11 November 2011


Week 19 (8)

14 November


18 November 2011


Week 20 (9)

21 November


25 November 2011


Week 21 (10)

28 November


2 December 2011


Week 22 (11)

5 December


9 December 2011


Week 23 (12)

12 December


16 December 2011

Christmas Vacation


PGDE only

Week 24

19 December


23 December 2011

Christmas Vacation

Week 25

26 December


30 December 2011

Christmas Vacation

Week 26

2 January


6 January 2012

Christmas Vacation

Week 27

9 January


13 January
2012

Revision Week/Exam diet starting Saturday 14 January

Week 28

16 January


20 January 2012

Exam Week

Week 29

23 January


27 January 2012

Exam Week

Week 30 (1)

30 January


3 February 2012

COMMENCEMENT OF TEACHING


2
ND

HALF SESSION

Week 31 (2)

6
February


10 February 2012


Week 32 (3)

13 February


17 February 2012


Week 33 (4)

20 February


24 February 2012


Week 34 (5)

27 February


2 March 2012


Week 35 (6)

5 March


9 March 2012


Week 36 (7)

12 March


16 March 2012


Week 37 (8)

19
March


23 March 2012


Week 38

26 March


30 March 2012

Easter Vacation

Week 39

2 April


6 April 2012

Easter Vacation

Week 40

9 April


13 April 2012

Easter Vacation

Week 41 (9)

16 April


20 April 2012


Week 42 (10)

23 April


27 April 2012


Week
43 (11)

30 April


4 May 2012


Week 44 (12)

7 May


11 May 2012


Week 45

14 May


18 May 2012

Revision Week/Exam diet starting Saturday 19 May

Week 46

21 May


25 May 2012

Exam Week

Week 47

28 May


1 June 2012

Exam Week

Week 48

4 June


8 June 2012

Exam Week/End of Session

Week 49

11 June


15 June 2012


Week 50

18 June


22 June 2012


Week 51

25 June


29 June 2012


Week 52

2 July


8 July 2012

Graduation Week