Issue Four: Falsifiability, Objectivity, Method, Theory and Norms

posted Sep 5, 2011, 3:19 PM by I Chatterjea   [ updated Jun 20, 2016, 8:48 AM ]

How do we articulate our self-identification as Social Scientists, or critically engaged Humanities scholars always seeking theoretical challenges to methodologically derived findings? Last year, the point was raised that the Study of Religion is a modernist enterprise with “objectivity” as its goal; we need to talk about how the term is used in discussions about analysis. Even if we cannot have the sort of “Objectivity” with a capital “O” desired by some modern philosophers, does it necessarily follow that all claims to knowledge and modes of data acquisition are on the same level?

Speakers: Ipsita Chatterjea and Merinda Simmons

Readings for Merinda Simmons's segment 

1) Lorraine Daston and  Peter Galison. "The Image of Objectivity." Representations 40 (1992): 81-128.

2) Peter Dear. "From Truth to Disinterestedness in the Seventeenth Century." Social Studies of Science 22.4 (Nov., 1992): 619-631.

3) Lorraine Daston. "Objectivity and the Escape from Perspective." Social Studies of Science 22.4

Readings for Ipsita Chatterjea's segment

1) Hans G. Kippenberg, Violence as Worship: Religious Wars in the Age of Globalization,  "Introduction: Violence as Communal Religious Action" p.1-19

2) David Frankfurter, "The Satanic Ritual Abuse Panic as Religious-Studies Data"   Numen, 2003,  Vol. 50 p. 108-117 

3) Bruce Lincoln Gods and Demons, Priests and Scholars, Chapter  "Anomaly Science and Religion"  p. 43-52