1st Edition

Scripturalizing the Human The Written as the Political

Edited By Vincent L. Wimbush Copyright 2015
    260 Pages
    by Routledge

    260 Pages 26 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Scripturalizing the Human is a transdisciplinary collection of essays that reconceptualizes and models "scriptural studies" as a critical, comparative set of practices with broad ramifications for scholars of religion and biblical studies. This critical historical and ethnographic project is focused on scriptures/scripturalization/scripturalizing as shorthand for the (psycho-cultural and socio-political) "work" we make language do for and to us. Each essay focuses on an instance of or situation involving such work, engaging with the Bible, Book of Mormon, Bhagavata Purana, and other sacred texts, artifacts, and practices in order to explore historical and ongoing constructions of the human. Contributors use the category of "scriptures"—understood not simply as texts, but as freighted shorthand for the dynamics and ultimate politics of language—as tools for self-illumination and self-analysis. The significance of the collection lies in the window it opens to the rich and complex view of the highs and lows of human-(un-)making as it establishes the connections between a seemingly basic and apolitical religious category and a set of larger social-cultural phenomena and dynamics.

    Introduction: Scriptural-izing: Analytical Wedge for a Critical History of the Human  Vincent L. Wimbush  1. Literally Creative: Intertextual Gaps and Artistic Agency  James S. Bielo  2. The Bible in North American Folklore  Brian Malley  3. Fragmenting the Book of Mormon Imaginary  Daymon Mickel Smith  4. Simultaneity in Global History  José Rabasa  5. Cast out of the Garden: Edenic Scripturalization, Flowers, and Fallen Africa  Grey Gundaker  6. Authorities of Scriptural Technologies in America  Lars Kirkhusmo Pharo  7. From Sanskritization to Vernacularization: Subaltern Inscriptions of Bodies and Landscapes  Barbara A. Holdrege  8. Inkface: The Slave Stigma in England’s Early Imperial Imagination  Miles P. Grier  9. Copts, Scripturalization, and Identity in the Diaspora  Saad Michael Saad and Donald A. Westbrook


    Vincent L. Wimbush is the director of the Institute for Signifying Scriptures and is past president of the Society of Biblical Literature.