Tag Archives: religion

(Animism) Primitive Jewish Culture (E.B. Tylor)

Jewish culture and Judaism spot E.B. Tylor’s monumental Primitive Culture. There is no special theory of Jewish culture or Judaism in Primitive Culture. Judaism is nothing special, just one more dataset in the ethnographic record. Primitive Judaism is folklore Primitive … Continue reading

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Animism, Affect, Spiritual Beings (E.B. Tylor)

In late mid-career, I finally got around to E.B. Tylor’s Primitive Culture and more of these musty nineteenth century contributions to the science of Religion. I am now including in my graduate seminar on Theories and Methods Max Müller’s Lectures … Continue reading

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Religion = Spiritual Beings

Teaching Theories and Methods again, the classics.. “Belief” is not quite the right word and not what he actually meant. I’ve lost all patience with beating around the bush as to what people mean by “religion” and “religious.” In social-historical-political … Continue reading

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The State of Israel Does Not Exist (Judaism)

If a state is defined as a sovereign territorial body, then, by the reckoning here by Zvi Bar’el in Haaretz, the State of Israel does not exist. Instead of being a state in which the rule of law applies throughout … Continue reading

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The New New Jewish Left (Samuel Hayim Brody Reads Atalia Omer)

For a uniquely keen analysis of the new new (anti-Zionist) Jewish left, you can find here Samuel Hayim Brody’s sympathetic-critical read of Atalia Omer’s Days of Awe: Reimagining Jewishness in Solidarity with Palestinians. Tagging the rhetorical difference between “Judaism” and … Continue reading

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(Force of Separation) Trump & Orthodox Judaism (Religion, Death, Chaos)

  The conventional wisdom is that what draws religious voters to conservative politics is the appeal of order and structure. The more observant, the more devout the stronger this appeal. We know that 83% of orthodox Jews are supporting Trump, … Continue reading

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Haredim & State

The Coronavirus pandemic and its impact on Haredi society and the impact of Haredi society on the State in Israel are highlighting the strong core point of liberal political theory and liberal religion in relation to matters concerning the distinction … Continue reading

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Liberal Hot Takes re: Haredi Response to Coronavirus

Asked by a colleague in Religious Studies about the spike of infection rates of coronavirus among Haredi Jews in the fall and around the High Holiday season, and about Haredi response to and backlash re: attempts by government authority to … Continue reading

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(Haredi) Religion & State in Israel (Coronavirus)

  What is especially fine about the analysis here are the distinctions drawn between [1] first wave (spring 2020) and second wave rates and patterns of infection, [2] Hasidic and non-Hasidic (Litvak) and Sephardic Haredi communities, [3] demographic circumstance (large … Continue reading

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From Messianism to Real Estate (American Jews & Jewish Settlements in the West Bank)

Too long a tale to tell here, the origins of the Jewish settlement project in the occupied West Bank after the 1967 Six Day War was an indigenous phenomenon ideologically rooted in the Israeli religious right and the messianic imagination. … Continue reading

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