Recent Posts

January 12th, 2017

Writing religion for the IPSP

posted by The Editors

1510623_1375984419369773_2230796617787010338_nCan we hope for a better society? That is the animating question behind an ambitious project, the International Panel on Social Progress (IPSP). It exists to “harness the competence of hundreds of experts about social issues” and to “deliver a report addressed to all social actors, movements, organizations, politicians, and decision-makers, in order to provide them with the best expertise on questions that bear on social change.”

Also modeled on the IPCC, drafts of the chapter reports are available for public comment. These are the collected responses to Chapter 16- Religions and Social Progress: Critical Assessments and Creative Partnerships, gathered from readers of The Immanent Frame.

To read the original call for comments, written by coordinating lead authors Nancy Ammerman and Grace Davie, click here.

Read Writing religion for the IPSP

January 9th, 2017

Catholic Humanitas: Notes on Critical Catholic Studies

posted by Valentina Napolitano

December 20th, 2016

Religion and the new populism

posted by Paul Silas Peterson

December 19th, 2016

The Shipwrecked Mind: On Political Reaction

posted by Michael C. Behrent

~ More recent posts ~


January 9, 2017

Catholic Humanitas

by Valentina Napolitano

napolitanoContemporary engagement with embodied practices of Latin American transnational migrancy, as well as the long durée of the return of Catholic religious materialities, ideas, and fantasies from the Americas to Rome, shows the reignition of an old conflict within the Catholic Church and a lasting paradox within a Catholic Humanitas. This is the paradox growing from the Catholic fantasy of “full” conversion of the Other/Indian, with her imagined docile, childlike, as well as barbaric qualities—a fantasy that positions the Other/Indian as at once within and without a Catholic Humanitas. This constitutive dimension of Catholic Humanitas infuses the tension between Sameness and Otherness that still permeates Western cosmologies and, for better and worse, political practices toward migration and hospitality in Europe.

Read the article here.


December 20, 2016

Religion and the new populism

by Paul Silas Peterson

Light trailThe push for stronger cultural identities and political borders in the new populism is inseparable from the general concern about Islam and immigration. Most of the new populists are promoting a one-sided criticism of Islam. In this context, talk about the Jewish and Christian heritage of the West has reemerged in secular Europe and in the United States as an alternative identity-forming heritage. . .

In light of this religious and political discourse today across the Western world, there is a need to have an open discussion about this idea of the Jewish and Christian heritage of the Western world. While some are using this concept to exclude others, the religious heritage of the West can actually be a positive resource for multiculturalism, peaceful social integration, and humanitarian aid.

Read the article here.

Featured discussion

Image via Flickr user Quinn Dombrowski

The politics of national identity

These essays show how groups in Western Europe and the United States draw on religious and secular symbols when determining belonging.

Featured publication

The Shipwrecked Mind

The Shipwrecked Mind

Michael C. Behrent reviews the latest volume from Mark Lilla, which he calls “an important and timely study of political reaction” from a “powerful and sobering analyst of political illusions.”

Featured essay


The refugee crisis and religion

“Shifting focus from religious identity to solidarity with fellow human beings…would be a significant step in shifting dominant discourses and attitudes to the crisis.”