Monday, November 03, 2008

Midway through AAR

If I come away from this year's AAR annual meeting with any one Big Idea, it is that I am glad to see Pagan Studies moving away from "Wiccans and Odinists," as Jone Salomonsen put it, and towards a broader sense of a "a way to think about religion" (or religious behavior). Our joint session with the Religion and Popular Culture Group started the weekend off well, and presenting a co-written work-in-progress paper and slide show there got me thinking about how I want to return to the whole nexus of nature religion, civil religion, and small-p paganism as well as thinking about capital-P Paganism.

Meanwhile, the election that has lasted forever is almost over!

Last night, from the 23rd floor of the Chicago Hilton Towers, I looked down a floodlit, fenced-off portion of Grant Park, where Sen. Obama's victory rally will be held. The mayor has "suggested" that businesses in this part of town close at 3 p.m. on Election Day. No doubt they expect a riot if Obama loses -- and probably if he wins as well, by the same mob-logic that caused violence and destruction in Philadelphia when the Phillies won the World Series.

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