New Books Network

Joshua Esler, “Tibetan Buddhism among Han Chinese: Mediation and Superscription of the Tibetan Tradition in Contemporary Chinese Society” (Lexington Books, 2020)
While Tibetan Buddhism continues to face restrictions and challenges imposed by the state in contemporary China, it has in fact entered mainstream Chinese society with a growing middle-class and even celebrity following at the same time. In Tibetan Buddhism among Han Chinese: Mediation and Superscription of the Tibetan Tradition in... Read More
Neela Bhattacharya Saxena, “Absent Mother God of the West: A Kali Lover’s Journey into Christianity and Judaism” (Rowman, 2015)
In Absent Mother God of the West: A Kali Lover’s Journey into Christianity and Judaism (Rowman, 2015) Neela Bhattacharya Saxena draws on her personal religious experiences and devotion to the Goddess Kali as a starting point to reflect on the absence of a Divine Feminine in Christianity and Judaism. We... Read More
Karen Skinazi, “Women of Valor: Orthodox Jewish Troll Fighters, Crime Writers, and Rock Stars in Contemporary Literature and Culture” (Rutgers UP, 2018)
Media portrayals of Orthodox Jewish women frequently depict powerless, silent individuals who are at best naive to live an Orthodox lifestyle, and who are at worst, coerced into it. In Women of Valor: Orthodox Jewish Troll Fighters, Crime Writers, and Rock Stars in Contemporary Literature and Culture (Rutgers University Press,... Read More
Aaron Koller, “Unbinding Isaac: The Significance of the Akedah for Modern Jewish Thought” (Jewish Publication Society, 2020)
In Unbinding Isaac: The Significance of the Akedah for Modern Jewish Thought (Jewish Publication Society, 2020), Aaron Koller, professor of Near Eastern and Jewish Studies at Yeshiva University, provides a compelling contemporary perspective on one of the Bible’s most famous and difficult texts, the Akedah, the Binding of Isaac. By plumbing the... Read More
E. Bazzano and M. Hermansen, “Varieties of American Sufism” (SUNY Press, 2020)
Sufism in America is now a developed sub-field of study that exists at the intersection of Islamic Studies, American religions, and popular spirituality. Varieties of American Sufism: Islam, Sufi Orders, and Authority in a Time of Transition (State University of New York Press 2020) an edited volume by Elliott Bazzano... Read More
Majid Daneshgar, “Studying the Qur’an in the Muslim Academy” (Oxford UP, 2019)
“Consider the works of the renowned Nobel-prize-winning African American writer, literary and social critic, and activist Toni Morrison (b. 1931),” writes Majid Daneshgar. “Hers—like Said’s—are popular in the West and cover most of the principal themes covered by Orientalism, including otherness, outsider-ship, exploitation and cultural colonialism and imperialism. Yet …... Read More
Ezra Cappell and Jessica Lang, “Off the Derech: Leaving Orthodox Judaism” (SUNY Press, 2020)
Off the Derech: Leaving Orthodox Judaism (SUNY Press, 2020), edited by Ezra Cappell and Jessica Lang, combines powerful first-person accounts with incisive scholarly analysis to understand the phenomenon of ultra-Orthodox Jews who leave their insular communities and venture into the wider world. In recent years, many formerly ultra-Orthodox Jews have... Read More
Steven Heine, “Readings of Dōgen’s ‘Treasury of the True Dharma Eye'”(Columbia UP, 2020)
The Treasury of the True Dharma Eye (Shōbōgenzō) is the masterwork of Dōgen (1200–1253), founder of the Sōtō Zen Buddhist sect in Kamakura-era Japan. It is one of the most important Zen Buddhist collections, composed during a period of remarkable religious diversity and experimentation. The text is complex and compelling, famed for... Read More
Yehoshua November, “Two Worlds Exist” (Orison Books, 2016)
Yehoshua November’s second poetry collection, Two Worlds Exist (Orison Books), movingly examines the harmonies and dissonances involved in practicing an ancient religious tradition in contemporary America. November’s beautiful and profound meditations on work and family life, and the intersections of the sacred and the secular, invite the reader–regardless of background–to... Read More
Kristin Kobez Du Mez, “Jesus and John Wayne: How White Evangelicals Corrupted a Faith and Fractured a Nation” (Liveright, 2020)
One of the most perplexing elements of Donald Trumps’s 2016 electoral victory was the overwhelming support he received from white Evangelicals, a demographic that has stubbornly clung to him in the face of everything he has done. The fact that a thrice-married reality-TV star has been able to hold onto... Read More