Prof. Richard Newton introduces us to the latest iteration of the Bulletin for the Study of Religion, now a joint collaboration between Equinox Publishing and the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama.
I first came across the Bulletin for the Study of Religion in what was the office to the School of Religion at Claremont Graduate University (CGU). I was waiting in line near the seat of power–the office administrator’s desk–and saw a few copies lying there amongst other materials. I thumbed through the pages of what I found to be an intriguing illustration of the academic study of religion beyond any one institution or subfield.
Some of you will know that the Bulletin began in 1971 under the auspices of The Council of Societies for the Study of Religion. Both the Bulletin and the Council brought together a diverse array of scholars and associations invested in the academic study of religion. The Bulletin played a crucial role in facilitating exchanges about how we study religion in the academy, especially against the backdrop of departments, guilds, and nations trying to determine their identity in relation to religion. After the Council disbanded in 2009, the Bulletin moved to Equinox Publishing where it remains one of the oldest ongoing publications in the academic study of religion in North America.
Earlier in 2020, Equinox and the Department of Religious Studies at the University of Alabama entered into an agreement to continue to bring you the Bulletin for the Study of Religion. And I’m honored to serve as editor in this chapter of the publication’s history. In this capacity, I am excited to carry forth a vision for the Bulletin that continues the tradition developed by all those who’ve contributed to it over the years.
Now there are so many things you could be reading, so why should you be reading the Bulletin? In this moment, I am convinced that we need something to help us take stock of what we are doing and where we are going in the academic study of religion.
Simply put, we have things to talk about!
That’s why going forward the Bulletin brings you a magazine for the international field. In our four issues per year, you will find features that take you to all the sites where scholars are at work.
- In “The Interview,” I sit down with movers and shakers in the academic study of religion to learn about their own scholarly origin story and their take on the field’s direction.
- “The Profession” profiles scholars who’ve employed their training in compelling ways in, around, and outside of the academy.
- “The Press” gives you the scoop on what journal editors and publishers need you to know to land your work in print.
- Sage D’Vice answers “The Question” on the minds of scholars at every professional stage.
- And trying to keeping up with the digital humanities? “The Download” keeps you plugged in on the tools and developments that can enhance your next project.
The Bulletin will continue to publish experimental, peer-reviewed essays of use to the wider field. But these will now be joined by pieces on the department, the classroom, the conference, and everywhere else the study of religion takes us.
To help make this happen we have assembled an accomplished editorial board from across the globe and a production team comprised of graduate students from the Department’s Religion in Culture M.A. program.
2020 what it is, we are publishing two double issues this year–the first of which is out right now. And we will be rolling out new digital elements in due course.
Yes, I already know what you want to ask. Individuals and institutions can subscribe to the Bulletin in a few different ways. And whether you prefer to read it in print or on a screen, Equinox has you covered.
If you have questions or are interested in submitting a piece, please reach out.
…So have you read the latest Bulletin.