J. Barton Scott
Office Hours:Please refer to the syllabus and/or contact via email.
3359 Mississauga Road, Maanjiwe nendamowinan, 4th Floor
Mississauga, ON L5L 1C6
J. Barton Scott works on the global intellectual and cultural history of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, with a focus on South Asia and its transnational connections. He teaches courses on social and cultural theory, media and material religion, and religion in political thought. He is the author of Spiritual Despots: Modern Hinduism and the Genealogies of Self-Rule (University of Chicago/Primus) and Slandering the Sacred: Blasphemy Law and Religious Affect in Colonial India (University of Chicago/Permanent Black), and the co-editor of Imagining the Public in Modern South Asia (Routledge). He is currently working on a book called The Piercing Virtue: Isherwood's Guru in Adorno's Los Angeles, which takes the unlikely friendship between a British novelist and a Bengali monk as the starting point for a theoretically-inflected inquiry into global guru culture—into renunciation as piercing virtue—at mid-twentieth century.
Ph.D. Duke University
B.A. Swarthmore College
- The Piercing Virtue: Isherwood's Guru in Adorno's Los Angeles (in progress)
- Slandering the Sacred: Blasphemy Law and Religious Affect in Colonial India (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2023, in the "Class 200: New Studies in Religion" series; Delhi: Permanent Black, 2024, in the "Hedgehog and Fox: History and Politics" series, co-published with Ashoka University)
- Spiritual Despots: Modern Hinduism and the Genealogies of Self-Rule (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2016, in the "South Asia Across the Disciplines" series co-published with Columbia University and University of California Presses; Delhi: Primus Books, 2017)
- Sole Honorable Mention for the American Comparative Literature Association's Harry Levin Prize for an Outstanding First Book
- Imagining the Public in Modern South Asia. Co-edited with Brannon Ingram and SherAli Tareen (London: Routledge, 2016, from a special issue of South Asia: Journal of South Asian Studies)
- "Insulting Religion: Penal Secularism and the Government of Feeling," Journal of the American Academy of Religion, forthcoming.
- “Translated Liberties: Karsandas Mulji’s Travels in England and the Anthropology of the Victorian Self,” Modern Intellectual History 16, no. 3 (2019): 803-33.
- "Only Connect: Three Reflections on the Sociality of Secularism," Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry 6, no. 1 (2019): 48-69.
- “How to Defame a God: Public Selfhood in the Maharaj Libel Case,” in Imagining the Public in Modern South Asia, eds. Brannon Ingram, J. Barton Scott, and SherAli Tareen, special issue of South Asia: The Journal of South Asian Studies 38 no. 3 (2015): 387-402.
- "What is a Public? Notes from South Asia" (co-authored with Brannon Ingram), in Imagining the Public in Modern South Asia, eds. Brannon Ingram, J. Barton Scott, and SherAli Tareen, special issue of South Asia: The Journal of South Asian Studies 38 no. 3 (2015): 357-370.
- "Aryas Unbound: Print Hinduism and the Cultural Regulation of Religious Offense,” Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East 35, no. 2 (2015): 294-309.
- “Luther in the Tropics: Karsandas Mulji and the Colonial ‘Reformation’ of Hinduism,” Journal of the American Academy of Religion 83, no. 1 (2015): 181-209.
- “Unsaintly Virtue: Swami Dayananda Saraswati and Modern Hindu Hagiography,” Journal of Hindu Studies 7, no. 3 (2014): 371-391.
- “Comic Book Karma: Visual Mythologies of the Hindu Modern,” in Inscriptions, eds. Jeremy Stolow and Lisa Gitelman, special issue of Postscripts: The Journal of Sacred Texts and Contemporary Worlds 4, no. 2 (2010): 177-197.
- “Miracle Publics: Theosophy, Christianity, and the Coulomb Affair,” History of Religions 49, no. 2 (2009): 172- 196.
- A Commonwealth of Affection: Modern Hinduism and the Cultural History of the Study of Religion." In Constructing Nineteenth Century Religion, eds. (Columbus: Ohio State University Press, 2019).
- “The Supernatural and Colonialism.” In Super Religion, ed. Jeffrey J. Kripal, New York: Palgrave, 2016.
- "Cosmic Horror in Spain: Review of Venus," Journal of Religion & Film 26, no. 2, October 2022
- "The Prince and the Whale: Review of Werckmeister Harmonies," Journal of Religion & Film 26, no. 2, October 2022
- "Cosmic Schlock: Review of 223 Wick," Journal of Religion & Film 26, no. 2, October 2022
- "Religion Lovecraft Country," The Revealer, February 2021
- "Mucho Mucho Amor, Mucho Mucho Religion," The Revealer, October 2020
- "Anand Patwardhan's Reason (Vivek),"Journal of Religion & Film 22, no. 2 (October 2018).
- "Religion and Death on French Television: On Watching Ad Vitam," Journal of Religion & Film 22, no. 2 (October 2018).
- When Zombies Ate Quebec: On Watching Les Affamés," Journal of Religion & Film 21, no. 2 (October 2017).
- Modern South Asia
- Postcolonial Theory
- Religion and Law
- Media and Popular Culture
- Affect Theory
- History of Study of Religion