Essays in Anarchism in Religion is a pioneering academic publishing project aiming to make first-rate scholarship freely accessible through a sustainable publishing model. Reflecting both a renewed interest in anarchism in the context of post-Marxist leftist politics, and the revival of religious ideas and movements in the political sphere, this book series examines the overlaps between anarchist ideas and activism, and religious thought and practice, from a diverse range of perspectives. Central to this project, therefore, is the idea that original, socially critical, scholarship should be freely available.
Uniting scholars from a variety of disciplines and a host of countries, the series adopts a rigorous process of peer-review to ensure the quality of its scholarship, while focusing on making this research freely available to all. The first volume comprises nine essays from contributors based in Finland, Norway, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, with topics ranging from ‘was the historical Jesus anarchist?’ to Zen Buddhism and the philosophies of Max Stirner and Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. A full chapter breakdown is given below.
Working with Stockholm University Press, the first volume of this series will be available in both physical and electronic forms, and in a free-to-download format.
The purpose of this crowdfunding initiative is to fund the first volume of the series and ideally provide a secure foundation for the projected future volumes. With a graded list of contribution points backers can support this project through a range of small or large donations, with each scale carrying with it a particular reward. These rewards range from an electronic copy of the manuscript delivered to your inbox, to physical copies of the book, to the inclusion of departmental and university logos in the finished book in recognition of institutional backers.
We seek £3,800 to cover the production costs (the 'book processing charges') of this publishing venture, and thank you for your interest and contribution.
Detailed chapter breakdown:
1. Introduction: Anarchism and religion: mapping an increasingly fruitful landscape - Matthew Adams (Loughborough) and Alexandre Christoyannopoulos (Loughborough)
This introductory chapter stakes out the central approaches that define the current scholarship on anarchism and religion, placing the chapters in both a theoretical and historiographical context. The introduction also demonstrates the inherent interdisciplinarity of current work on the subject, encompassing political theory, religious studies, theology, political and intellectual history, and philosophy.
2. The Catholic Worker, Dorothy Day, and Exemplary Anarchism - Benjamin J. Pauli (Assistant Professor of Liberal Studies, Kettering University, US)
Pauli’s chapter explores the Catholic Worker community in the United States, drawing on the Weberian notion of exemplarity to understand the efforts of the community’s leaders to offer non-dominating forms of leadership.
3. Mutuality, resistance and egalitarianism in a late colonial Bakongo Christian movement - Ruy Blanes (Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Social Anthropology, University of Bergen, Norway)
Blanes’ chapter examines the role of the Tokoist Church in colonial Angola and its role in challenging Portuguese colonialism, while advancing a complex of anti-state and organisational ideas that were essentially anarchist in nature.
4. Why Anarchists Like Zen? A Libertarian Reading of Shinran (1173-1263) - Enrique Galvan-Alvarez, (Lecturer, Universidad Internacional de la Rioja, Spain)
Galvan-Alvarez’s chapter explores Japan in the 12th and 13th centuries, examining the overlaps between anarchism and Buddhist thought, represented in the work of Shinran Shonin.
5. Was the historical Jesus an anarchist? Anachronism, anarchism and the historical Jesus - Justin Meggitt, (University Senior Lecturer and Academic Director for the Study of Religion and Classics, University of Cambridge, UK)
Meggitt’s chapter examines the question of whether ‘Jesus was an anarchist’, using this idea to interrogate both the content and ambitions of anarchist political thought, and the theological development of Christianity.
6. A Reflection on Mystical Anarchism in the Works of Gustav Landauer and Eric Voegelin - Franziska Hoppen (Ph.D Candidate, Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Kent, UK).
Hoppen’s contribution offers a comparison of the work of Gustav Landauer and Eric Voegelin, tracing the importance of a ‘mystical anarchism’ to the political theory of both thinkers.
7. The Anarchē of Spirit: Proudhon’s Anti-theism & Kierkegaard’s Self in Apophatic Perspective - Simon Podmore (Senior Lecturer, Department of Theology, Philosophy and Religious Studies, Liverpool Hope University, UK)
Podmore’s piece compares the work of Søren Kierkegaard with Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, exploring the affinities between the two thinkers’ negation of God and exposing the theological and philosophical parallels and divergences between these two important figures.
8. Does religious belief necessarily mean servitude? On Max Stirner and the hardened heart - Hugo Strandberg (Lecturer in Department of Philosophy, Åbo Akademi University, Finland)
Strandberg’s contribution looks at German individualist anarchist Max Stirner to question the idea of whether religious belief demands servitude.
Risks and challenges
One (welcome!) challenge would be if we get too much funding. In such a scenario, the extra funds would go towards the same production costs for volumes 2 and 3 (which are in the pipeline).
The opposite challenge is if we do not get sufficient funding for the project to go ahead. In that case, you will get your money back.
- (42 days)