By Birgit Meyer
The relevant subject of this quantity is the incorporation of newly obtainable mass media into practices of non secular mediation in numerous settings, together with Pentecostal-charismatic church buildings and Islamic activities, and using spiritual types and pictures within the sphere of radio and cinema. in line with a long term cooperation, the members research the position of faith and media within the emergence and sustenance of latest ‘aesthetic formations’ that entice the physique and the senses, and generate new types of binding and moods of belonging in our time.
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Extra info for Aesthetic Formations: Media, Religion, and the Senses (Religion Culture Critique)
I agree with Latour that “it is not enough for sociologists to recognize that a group is made, ‘reproduced,’ or ‘constructed’ through many means and through many tools” (39). , 38), but is being “reassembled” in a dynamic process of ongoing mediation. This question stands central in a new NWO-sponsored research program directed by Mattijs van de Port, Herman Roodenburg, and myself, titled Heritage Dynamics. Aesthetics of Persuasion and Politics of Authentication in Brazil, Ghana, South Africa and the Netherlands.
In Candomblé, it is understood that “deep truth” only reveals itself during the time-consuming path of initiation. Deep truths “come to you with time,” as one initiate phrased it succinctly: with submitting one’s body to the initiation procedures and the yearly cycle of rituals; with the observation of the many do’s and don’ts of terreiro life; and finally, with opening up the body for divine possession. “Deep truth” is an understanding of things that is, in its essence, inarticulable. Both Mãe Stella’s silence and her call “not to ask questions” seek to express this inarticulability: it is a demonstration of the belief that there is an incommensurable difference between saying “the initiation cycle lasts seven long years” (a phrase of seven words, which produce their meaning in a split second) and the experience of living those seven long years of energies given and energies received.
Instead, our collaboration created a highly stimulating intellectual space for engaging in conversations, whilst also leaving ample room for the specificities of the research locations and individual research interests. In this Introduction I have sought to reveal myriad connections and resonances between the ten chapters, and to draw out my perspective on the relation between aesthetic formations, religious mediations, sensational forms and styles of binding. While this perspective has been generated by digesting all the research taking place under the auspices of our research program, it should be pointed out that the authors themselves do not necessarily employ exactly the same conceptual terms.
Aesthetic Formations: Media, Religion, and the Senses (Religion Culture Critique) by Birgit Meyer