“Confucianism, A Habit of the Heart: Bellah, Civil Religion, and East Asia” (Ivanhoe & Kim eds.)

This month, SUNY Press releases “Confucianism, A Habit of the Heart: Bellah, Civil Religion, and East Asia” edited by Philip J. Ivanhoe (City University of Hong Kong) and Sungmoon Kim (City University of Hong Kong). The publisher’s description follows:

Can Confucianism be regarded as a civil religion for East Asia? This book explores this question, bringing the insights of Robert Bellah to a consideration of various expressions of the contemporary Confucian revival. Bellah identified American civil religion as a religious dimension of life that can be found throughout US culture, but one without any formal institutional structure. Rather, this “civil” form of religion provides the ethical principles that command reverence and by which a nation judges itself. Extending Bellah’s work, contributors from both the social sciences and the humanities conceive of East Asia’s Confucian revival as a “habit of the heart,” an underlying belief system that guides a society, and examine how Confucianism might function as a civil religion in China, Korea, and Japan. They discuss what aspects of Confucian tradition and thought are being embraced; some of the social movements, political factors, and opportunities connected with the revival of the tradition; and why Confucianism has not traveled much beyond East Asia. The late Robert Bellah’s reflection on the possibility for a global civil religion concludes the volume.

“Buddhism and the Political Process” (Kawanami, ed.)

In April, Palgrave Macmillan will release “Buddhism and the Political Process” edited by Hiroko Kawanami (Lancaster University, UK). The publisher’s description follows:

In its interpretation of Buddhism both as a cultural heritage and social ideology, this edited volume seeks to understand how Buddhist values and world views have impacted on the political process of many countries in Asia. In their respective work in Myanmar, Thailand, Sri Lanka, China, Japan and Tibet, the contributors engage with an interactive typology originally proposed by the late Ian Harris, to whom the book is dedicated. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, they explore the interaction between Buddhism and politics, religious authority and political power, considering issues that concern the politicization of monks, proliferation of violence, leadership, citizenship, democracy and communalism in order to further understand the interface between Buddhism and politics in modern and contemporary times.

Fai, “Civilizing the Chinese, Competing with the West”

In January, the Columbia University Press released “Civilizing the Chinese, Competing wth the West: Study Societies in Late Qing China,” by Chen Hon Fai (Lingnan University). The publisher’s description follows:

This book explores the development of late 19th century study societies in China against the context of the decline of the imperial Qing government and its control9789629966348 on ideological production, widespread social unrest, and intrusions by Western imperialist states. The author uncovers the history of civil society activism in China by examining the study societies in Shanghai, Beijing, and Hunan, which were organized around the goal of promoting and defending the Confucian religion. Illustrating a facet of the civil society that emerged in China as a reaction to the influences of Christianity, the modernization of Confucianism, and nationalist state formation, this study extends understanding of the unique and complex processes of Chinese political and cultural modernization in ways that differed from that of Western societies.

Salehin, “Islamic NGOs in Bangladesh”

In January, Routledge Press will release “Islamic NGOs in Bangladesh: Development, Piety and Neoliberal Governmentality,” by Mohammad Musfequs Salehin (University of Bergen).  The publisher’s description follows:

NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations) have emerged in both a development and aid capacity in Bangladesh, 9781138844452providing wide-reaching public services to the country’s population living in extreme poverty. However, resistance to and limitations of NGO-led development – which in conjunction with Bangladesh’s social transformation – led to a new religious-based NGO development practice.

Looking at the role of Islamic NGOs in Bangladesh, the book investigates new forms of neoliberal governmentality supported by international donors. It discusses how this form of social regulation produces and reproduces subjectivities, particularly Muslim women subjectivity, and has combined religious and economic rationality, further complicating the boundaries and the relationship between Islam, modernity, and development. The book argues that both secular and Islamic NGOs target women in the name of empowerment but more importantly as the most reliable partners to meet their debt obligations of micro-financing schemes, including shari’a-based financing. The targeted women, in turn, experience Islamic NGOs as less coercive and more sensitive to their religious environment in the rural village community than are secular NGOs.

Providing a comparative study of the role of religious and secular NGOs in the implementation of neoliberal policies and development strategies, this book will be a significant addition to research on South Asian Politics, Development Studies, Gender Studies, and Religion.

“Islam and the State in Myanmar” (ed. Crouch)

In March, the Oxford University Press will release “Islam and the State in Myanmar: Muslim-Buddhist Relations and the Politics of Belonging,” edited by Melissa Crouch (University of New South Wales).  The publisher’s description follows:

This volume explores the relation between Islam, Buddhism, and the state in Myanmar from both an empirical and a comparative 9780199461202perspective. It provides an informed response to contemporary issues facing the Muslim communities of Myanmar furthering knowledge of the interaction between state institutions, government policies and Muslim communities of the past and the present.

This volume aims to provide scholarly insights into Islam and Buddhism in Myanmar, to emphasize the inherent diversity within and among Muslim communities, and to bring a scholarly perspective and insight into the complex issues raised by the position of Muslims in Myanmar. It brings together experts in the field from a diverse array of disciplinesareligious studies, international relations, political science, history, Islamic studies, law and anthropology. The volume is focused around the themes of colonialism and the state; the everyday experiences of Muslims; and the challenges of violence and security.

“Indigenous Evangelists and Questions of Authority in the British Empire 1750-1940” (eds. Brock, Etherington et al)

In September, Brill released “Indigenous Evangelists and Questions of Authority in the British Empire 1750-1940,” edited by Peggy Brock (Edith Cowan University), Norman Etherington (University of Western Australia), Gareth Griffiths (University of Western Australia), and Jacqueline Van Gent (University of Western Australia). The publisher’s description follow:

This is the first full-length historical study of indigenous evangelists across a range of societies, geographical regions and colonial regimes 510hh54hzql-_sx325_bo1204203200_and the first to focus on the complex issues of authority surrounding the evangelists. It answers a need frequently voiced in recent studies of Christian missions. Most scholars now acknowledge that the remarkable expansion of Christianity in Africa, Asia and the Pacific in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries owed far more to the efforts of indigenous preachers than to the foreign missionaries who loom so large in publications. This book addresses that concern making an excellent introduction to the role of indigenous evangelists in the spread of Christianity, and the many countervailing pressures with which these individuals had to contend. It also includes in the introductory discussions useful statements of the current state of scholarship and theoretical debates in this field.

Keck, “British Burma in the New Century, 1895-1918”

In October, Palgrave Macmillan released “British Burma in the New Century, 1895-1918” by Stephen L. Keck (Emirates Diplomatic Academy).  The publisher’s description follows:

British Burma in the New Century, 1895 – 1918 draws upon neglected but very talented colonial authors to portray Burma between 1895 and 51pbustr2wl-_sx316_bo1204203200_1918, which was the apogee of British governance. These writers, most of them ‘Burmaphiles’, wrote against widespread misperceptions about Burma. They sought to separate Burma from India, recover the country’s recent and ancient past, understand Buddhism and revere the land, all while supporting the imperial mission. Between 1895 and 1918, Burma experienced a period of profound social and economic transformation. Burma would be challenged by bubonic plague, the persistence of crime, multiple forms of corruption and rising ethnic tensions. The Burmaphiles wrote during a dynamic period in which the foundations for much of modern Myanmar were established. New Century Burma proved to be a formative moment in the subsequent development of the country.

 

“Muslim Minority-State Relations: Violence, Integration, and Policy” (Mason, ed.)

In January, Palgrave Macmillan will release “Muslim Minority-State Relations: Violence, Integration, and Policy” edited by Robert Mason (London School of Economics and Political Science, UK). The publisher’s description follows:

This volume explores the dominant types of relationships between Muslim minorities and states in different parts of the world, the challenges each side faces, and the cases and reasons for exemplary integration, religious tolerance, and freedom of expression. By bringing together diverse case studies from Europe, Africa, and Asia, this book offers insight into the nature of state engagement with Muslim communities and Muslim community responses towards the state, in turn. This collection offers readers the opportunity to learn more about what drives government policy on Muslim minority communities, Muslim community policies and responses in turn, and where common ground lies in building religious tolerance, greater community cohesion and enhancing Muslim community-state relations.

“The Protection of Religious Minorities Worldwide” (Defeis and O’Connor, eds.)

Last month, Pax Romana released “The Protection of Religious Minorities Worldwide,” edited by Elizabeth F. Defeis (Seton Hall Law School) and Peter F. O’Connor. Prof. Defeis is an alumna of St. John’s Law and a member of the Advisory Board of the Center for International and Comparative Law at St. John’s.  Mr. O’Connor is a third-year law student at St. John’s. The publisher’s description follows:

Throughout history, religious minorities have experienced discrimination, persecution, expulsion, and genocide. Further, in the last decade, the world has witnessed an unprecedented increase in violent persecution of religious minorities, particularly in the Middle East, in Asia and in Africa. Yet the international community has been a bystander and has not been able or willing to develop a strategy to protect persecuted religious minorities and to stop their expulsion and genocide. After the Second World War with the creation of the United Nations, there were great hopes that all peoples could live in peace with one another as good neighbors, based on the fundamental human rights and the practice of tolerance as stated in the Preamble of the United Nations Charter. However, the United Nations never developed specific and effective strategies to protect the human rights of religious minorities and to stop their persecution, expulsion and genocide. Even so, we must recognize that the United Nations has been providing humanitarian assistance to refugees who fled for religious reasons. The 2014 Symposium at the United Nations in New York on the “Protection of Religious Minorities Worldwide” was directed at the international community in the hope that it will acknowledge the dire situation of so many religious minorities and will adopt practical strategies and measures for protection of, and strong humanitarian assistance for, the expelled religious refugees.

“Religion and Modernity in the Himalaya” (eds. Sijapati and Birkenholtz)

In December, Routledge will release “Religion and Modernity in the Himalaya,” edited by Megan Adamson Sijapati (Gettysburg College) and Jessica Vantine Birkenholtz (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign).  The publisher’s description follows:

Religion has long been a powerful cultural, social, and political force in the Himalaya. Increased economic and cultural flows, growth in tourism, and new forms of governance and media, however, have brought significant changes to the religious traditions of the region in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

This book presents detailed case studies of lived religion in the Himalaya to offer intra-regional perspectives on the ways in which lived religions are being re-configured or re-imagined in modernity. Based on original fieldwork, this book documents understudied forms of religion in the region and presents unique perspectives on the phenomenon and experience of religion, discussing why, when, and where practices, discourses, and the category of religion itself, are engaged by varying communities in the region. It yields fruitful insights into both the religious traditions and lived human experiences of Himalayan peoples in the modern era.

Presenting new research and perspectives on the Himalayan region, this book should be of interest to students and scholars of South Asian Studies, Religious Studies, and Modernity.

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