UPDATED: The AAR Vice Presidential Election and the Illusion of Choice

I just started (binge) watching the USA show Mr. Robot. It's good. You should watch it. One thing  really like about the show is that it often turns critical attention the language of freedom and choice in our society. The whole show is really built on the question of how free we are in modern … Continue reading UPDATED: The AAR Vice Presidential Election and the Illusion of Choice

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How Not To Be a Senior Scholar

I remember almost two years ago when American historian Edmund Morgan died. I had read Morgan's Visible Saints as part of my doctoral exams but, not being a historian by training or researching the colonial period, I hadn't read much else of his work. But after his death I read a lot about Morgan. I read … Continue reading How Not To Be a Senior Scholar

How To Use Your Scholarly Society to Promote Young Scholars

The following post comes from my new newsletter. I've decided to blog less and use the newsletter for thoughts like these. You should subscribe here to get the goods.  The North American Association for the Study of Religion, or NAASR, just released its program for the 2015 meeting this November in Atlanta. And it is an excellent example … Continue reading How To Use Your Scholarly Society to Promote Young Scholars

What Podcasts Do You Put in Your Ears?

I'm working on a review essay that covers the various academic podcasts about religion and religious studies  that have appeared in the past few years. I'm limiting myself to academic podcasts, or at least podcasts that feature academics. So, I'm not including things like Interfaith Voices or On Being. I am interested in podcasts not … Continue reading What Podcasts Do You Put in Your Ears?

Towards a Symbiotic Relationship Between Academic Pundits and Academic Academics; Or, another post about Reza Aslan.

I hope this is my last post about Reza Aslan. We'll see. A friend of mine posted to Facebook an excerpted an interview Nathan Schneider did with Aslan in 2010 where he discusses the guff he took for his early work writing for a general non-academic audience. As the questions of Aslan's credentials, the role of … Continue reading Towards a Symbiotic Relationship Between Academic Pundits and Academic Academics; Or, another post about Reza Aslan.

Why I Embargoed My Dissertation

I embargoed my dissertation. I did it because I could. I did it because everyone else who had graduated recently in my program did it. I did it because every junior faculty member I know said their publisher told them to erase all evidence that there book was ever a dissertation. They said libraries wouldn't buy … Continue reading Why I Embargoed My Dissertation

Tuscaloosa Bound: My New Job at the University of Alabama

I've already posted about it on Facebook and I think someone sent out a tweet about it but I'll post it here and make it official. I'm happy to announce I've accepted a one year faculty appointment in the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama for 2013-1014. I'm really excited to join … Continue reading Tuscaloosa Bound: My New Job at the University of Alabama

Tomorrow: Get Free Lunch and Hear Me Talk About Teaching With Twitter

I should have posted this earlier, but I'll be speaking as part of the great Eat Talk Teach Run series at Emory. ETTR combines four short (4 minute limit) talks on teaching with free lunch and frozen yogurt. It's awesome. Come check it out. Details: Eat. Talk. Teach. Run! An event to energize grad student … Continue reading Tomorrow: Get Free Lunch and Hear Me Talk About Teaching With Twitter

Shut Up and Start Writing: Week 2- The Starting Pistol

BANG! And we're off.  Alright folks, time to check in with what you did this week and what your goal is for next week. I actually got the chapter I've been working on revised and emailed to my adviser. So, if Dennis got his done too, that adviser should have a nice batch of summer … Continue reading Shut Up and Start Writing: Week 2- The Starting Pistol

Your Taste is Killer: Ira Glass Provides Much Needed Dissertation Motivation

I've been slogging through the dissertation work lately. I'm getting stuff done. But the joy is fading. Then I found this:   Oh, Ira. Thanks. I needed this. I consider our work as academics creative. The very best academic writing has a creative flair to it, whether in the prose or the theory or the … Continue reading Your Taste is Killer: Ira Glass Provides Much Needed Dissertation Motivation