Reviews

Man Without a Country: “The Myth of the Muslim Tide”

by Nora Connor His sociology is methodical, clear and convincing, but he’s bringing a slide-rule and a pocket protector to a gunfight.
Religion-Secular, Tangled Divisions

Religion-Secular, Tangled Divisions

What does it mean to pursue, inhabit, or lead a valuable, ethical life in a secular age? Are we living in a post-secular world? A review of two new essay collections.
Saint George, the Monstrous Saint

Saint George, the Monstrous Saint

An excerpt from Afterlives of the Saints: Stories from the Ends of Faith (Unbridled Books, 228 pp.) by Colin Dickey. Much of the actual life of George is lost to history, if he was in fact a real person.

Let’s Get Radical: a review of The Light In Her Eyes

by Rachel Riederer It’s difficult for me to conceive of the memorization of scripture as even a mildly progressive act, let alone a radical one. But The Light in Her Eyes...sets out to prove that it is.
Missed Opportunities: a review of "Arab Media"

Missed Opportunities: a review of “Arab Media”

by Narges Bajoghli It's true that mass media have been used (and still are, in some contexts) as a means of social engineering...Nonetheless, it's imperative to remember that the state cannot control how people interpret what they see.

More Tea, Vicar? A review of BBC’s “Rev”

by Abhimanyu Das The Church of England inhabits a unique place in this busy trafficking of religious stereotypes. They're the Church that's known for being, well, not that religious.

Cooking the Books: A Review of “The Revisionaries”

By Nathan Schradle The Revisionaries, a documentary about the Texas State Board of Education, debuted at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival.
Inventing My Religion

Inventing My Religion

By Fred Folmer Shortly after finishing Invented Religions: Imagination, Fiction and Faith (Ashgate, 2010), a recent book by religious studies scholar Carole M. Cusack, I tried a quick experiment.

Perverse Mission? Catholic Approaches to Foreign Policy

Reverse Mission: Transnational Religious Communities and the Making of US Foreign Policy By Timothy Byrnes. Georgetown University Press, 2001. 216 pp. by Frances Kissling Timothy Byrnes is an engaging academic political scientist who has written extensively and wisely on religion and politics, particularly the political role of the institutional Catholic church (see Transnational Catholicism in Postcommunist Europe, Rowman &...

The World Before Her: Making Indian Women

A review of The World Before Her, now showing in the Tribeca Film Festival. by Natasha Raheja  The opening sequence of director Nisha Pahuja’s documentary The World Before Her cuts sharply between salwar kameez and swimsuits, Marathi and English, Bombay and Aurangabad, stilettos and chappals, open hair and plaits, bhangra beats and nationalistic hymns, saffron and...

Riot in the Cathedral

  A review of The Orthodox Church and Russian Politics, by Irina Papkova. Oxford University Press, 2011. By Sean Guillory In late February, four members of the Russian feminist punk group, Pussy Riot, performed a “punk prayer” on the altar of Christ Our Savoir Cathedral, the seat of the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC). Their action, which included singing...

Act of Seeing

From Genevieve Yue's review at Reverse Shot of Terrence Malick's new movie, Tree of Life:
Cinematically, [Stan Brakhage's Yggdrasill:  Whose Roots Are Stars in the Human Mind is] one of Tree of Life’s closest arboreal cousins, a kind of film best described as devotional: one that gives us a direct experience of the world, or as Nathaniel Dorsky...