From converts to itinerants: religious "butinage" as dynamic identity

Gez, Yonatan N. collab. ; Droz, Yvan collab. ; Soares, Edio collab. ; Rey, Jeanne collab.

Anthropologists and sociologists studying religious practices have to navigate through terminological preconceptions that assume religious identity to be essentially stable, only interrupted at times by dramatic instances of conversion. In this article, we introduce a metaphor as a way of thinking about religious phenomena outside of an exclusivist theological model and as self-fashioned, flexible, mobile, and composite practice. Using an allusion to the behavior of pollinizing insects, we speak of religious "butinage" as a way of stimulating the discussion regarding such dynamic religious practice, proposing that religious mobility is perhaps more common than some are inclined to think. By presenting the case in favor of this metaphor, we invite a fresh perspective on religious practices and religious identity.

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In: Current Anthropology. - Vol. 58(2017), No. 2, p. 141-159

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 Record created 2017-06-06, last modified 2018-01-28

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