An Interview with Jeffrey Kripal, Part Two: Challenging Binaries


This is part two of our three-part conversation with Jeffrey Kripal. Watch part one here. In conversation with Paul Courtright of Emory University, Jeffrey Kripal, of Rice University, discusses his new textbook, Comparing Religions: Coming to TermsProfessor Kripal’s latest book is a departure from the traditional ‘world religions’ textbook. He frames the adventure of the comparative study of religion as a kind of passage from conventional categories of religion, through an analysis of key themes and modes of reading texts and histories, to a reflexive re-reading in which the students rediscover themselves in relation to religion at the conclusion of the textbook, and the course in which Professor Kripal has used it. Our conversation ranges across a number of issues in the comparative study of religion, pedagogies for introducing students to the field, and education-as-journey of discovery in the humanities.