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Publicerad: 2019-09-19

Religionsvetaren Sam Gill gästar Umeå universitet 8–10 oktober

NYHET Sam Gill, professor emeritus i religionsvetenskap vid University of Colorado Boulder, gästar Institutionen för idé- och samhällsstudier under oktober månad. Gill kommer att ge två föreläsningar och ett seminarium som är öppna för alla intresserade.

Program med Sam Gill

Tisdag 8 oktober, kl. 13–15, i sal HD108, Humanisthuset
“What the One Thing Shows Me in the Case of Two Things”: Comparison as Essential to a Proper Academic Study of Religion

Abstract: Comparison is a fundamental operation in the milieu of the remarkable abilities of human beings to transcend themselves in acts of perception and the accumulation of knowledge. In the simplest terms, comparison is holding together things that are at once the same and different. The very possibility of the copresence of same and different, of is and is not, is a gift of human biology and evolution. Humans compare because it is our distinctive nature to do so. Academics have the added responsibility of being self-aware, self-reflective, and articulate when comparing. In this lecture I will develop a rich theory of comparison in conjunction with detailed reflections on my study of late nineteenth century encounters of European-Australians and Aborigines in Central Australia. My concern is both to advance our understanding of comparison and also to articulate in the practical terms of method what is involved in comparison, arguing most generally that comparison is of the very fabric of any proper study of religion.

Onsdag 9 oktober, kl. 13–15, i sal HE109, Humanisthuset
What is Mother Earth? A Name, A Meme, A Conspiracy

Abstract: A rich appreciation of Mother Earth—in the entwined contexts of Native American, Australian Aboriginal, and Western intellectual history—is accomplished in this lecture using new perspectives and strategies: Mother Earth as name, meme, and conspiracy. These approaches are developed and illustrated to offer insight into the dynamics of identity formation of individual cultures and amalgams of cultures, always occurring in the context of creative encounters. Projecting beyond the Mother Earth example, the lecture proposes a vision of the academic study of cultures and religions that focuses on gesture, repetition, body, and movement and a study that embraces coherence, in the presence of the constant threat of incoherence, as being often more important than meaning.

Torsdag den 10 oktober, kl. 13–15, i sal HC212, Humanisthuset, håller Gill ett seminarium kring ett kapitel ur sin kommande bok. Den vill ha bokkapitlet – “Laughing Out Loud: Following Jonathan Z. Smith Toward a Proper Academic Study of Religion” –, kan kontakta olle.sundstrom@umu.se.

Alla är välkomna!

Läs mer om Sam Gill