Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Martha G. Hamner
Fredric Jameson, religious studies method, religious studies theory, social theory
Arts and Humanities
This dissertation argues that the critical methods developed by and used within the field of religious studies can be reimagined as an expression of the modern desire for Utopia. It investigates how applications of critical social theory occlude the category of experience either deliberately or through methodological slight. Utopia addresses this problematic of representing the existential dimension of social life through its particular formulation of social contradiction. Analyzing Utopia's own representational situation within modernity affords scholars in religion a means to consider their investments in and desires for representing society as a totality that creates the conditions for and anticipates resolutions to these contradictions.
White, Holly A., "The Desire for Utopia in the Critical Study of Religion" (2017). Dissertations - ALL. 681.