“It’s Not Personal: Modernist Remediations of William James’s ‘Personal Religion.’” Further Directions in William James and Literary Studies. Ed. Todd Barosky and Justin Rogers-Cooper. Spec. issue of William James Studies 13.2 (2017): 140-66.
I’m grateful to Todd Barosky, Justin Rogers-Cooper, and the editorial team at William James Studies for all of their work on a second special issue, Further Directions in William James and Literary Studies, which includes my article on James’s notion of “personal religion.” You can read the whole issue online. For those who are interested, here is the abstract for my own article:
This essay examines how James’s distinction between “personal” and “institutional” religion in The Varieties of Religious Experience informs modernist literature. Specifically, it points to the inescapably social dimensions of “personal” forms of religious experience, demonstrating how modernists such as E.J. Pratt – once Canada’s leading poet – extended James’s notion of personal religion in relation to his pragmatic philosophy. I place James in conversation with modernists such as Pratt to challenge scholars to consider anew not only the nature of James’s literary influence, but also the many forms of religious expression that shaped the cultural landscape of the twentieth century. (Read the full article here.)