Aesthetic Formations: Media, Religion, and the Senses by Birgit Meyer

By Birgit Meyer

This ebook examines the incorporation of newly available mass media into practices of non secular mediation in a number of settings together with the Pentecostal Church and Islamic hobbies, in addition to using spiritual kinds and snapshot within the sphere of radio and cinema.

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Additional info for Aesthetic Formations: Media, Religion, and the Senses

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15. 16. 17. 27 of the transcendental because I share Vivian Sobchack’s proposition that human beings, as lived bodies, “have the capacity for transcendence: for a unique exteriority of being—an ex-stasis—that locates us ‘elsewhere’ and ‘otherwise’ even as it is grounded in and tethered to our lived body’s ‘here’ and ‘now’ ” (2008, italics in the original). While I acknowledge that defining religion is deeply problematic because definitions tend to freeze contingent historical factors into universal features (Asad 1993), I deem it important that we can still speak about religion and make comparisons.

While the chapters by Larkin and Hughes address the historical antecedents of the complicated relation between media, religion, politics and entertainment, other contributions concentrate on settings characterized by a salient public articulation of religion and the appeal to religious forms in contemporary public culture. The boundaries between religious and secular, and religion, politics and entertainment have become ever more difficult to draw, and this impinges on the manner in which people are addressed and bonds are formed.

As argued by Michele Rosenthal (2007), many studies of religion and media have paid too little attention to the emergence of deliberate critics and nonusers, for whom rejection of particular media becomes a distinctive marker. See also Matthew Engelke for a thoughtful analysis of how the Zimbabwean Friday Apostolics’ rejection of media (such as books) that render the Christian message tangible is part and parcel of a broader practice of mediation that faces the Protestant problem of how God can be present and yet unmediated (2007).

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