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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1974/7421

Title: Cavanaugh's Myth-Appropriation of Ideology: A Critical Review of The Myth of Religious Violence
Authors: Anthony, Charlotte Rae

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Keywords: Cavanaugh, William
The Myth of Religious Violence
Issue Date: 5-Sep-2012
Abstract: In The Myth of Religious Violence, William Cavanaugh deconstructs the category of “religion” in an attempt to undermine the distinction between “religious” violence and “secular” violence, and to examine the way in which this construction manifests itself in the conceptual apparatus of contemporary Western society. This paper focuses on how Cavanaugh uses the categories “myth” and “ideology.” Cavanaugh’s given definition and employment of “myth” is sensitive to broader conceptions of the category in myth-studies. Unlike “myth,” Cavanaugh does not offer a definition “ideology,” but he employs the term in two ways: (1) as an all-encompassing category that seems to override definitional issues with “religion” and; (2) pejoratively to signal the falsity of putatively “secular ideology” that is responsible for the creation and maintenance of the “myth of religious violence.” In particular, Cavanaugh does not recognize the “mythic” dimension of his use of the concept of “ideology.” Cavanaugh’s use of “ideology” appears to replace the general argument that “religion causes violence” with the equally general argument that “ideology causes violence” without informing his reader what he means by “ideology.”
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1974/7421
Appears in Collections:School of Religion Graduate Theses

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