Lecture 2: Religion as the Political (HT19)

Location: OCHS Library
Speaker: Prof. Gavin Flood, FBA
Date: February 7, 2019
Time: 2.00pm – 3.00pm

If understanding religion only in terms of system is problematic because it downplays the importance of person, then on one view, understanding religion in terms of person is to understand religion in terms of the political. This idea has been particularly developed in an interesting way by Giorgio Agamben in his notion of Homo sacer, the sacred man, who can be killed but not sacrificed. The lecture will explain Agamben’s ideas and offer critique through developing the notion of person as enacting holiness that needs to be grounded in the nature of the kind of being that the human is. This will entail beginning to develop an angle on the human that draws from the hard sciences.