Religion has dominated colonialism since the 16th century. 'Religion and the Secular' critically examines how religion has been used to subject indigenous concepts to the needs of colonial powers. Essays present the colonial relationship from the perspective of colonized cultures - including Mexico, Guatemala, Vietnam, India, Japan, South Africa and Canada - and colonizing powers, namely England, Germany and the United States. The volume offers a historical and ethnographical analysis of the relationship between the sacred and the secular, examining religion in relation to politics, economics and civil power.
Timothy Fitzgerald is Reader in Religion at the University of Stirling, Scotland. He has published research on Ambedkar Buddhism in India and on aspects of Japanese culture, as well as on philosophical and methodological issues in the study of religion. In 2001 he published The Ideology of Religious Studies (OUP, New York) and has another monograph due out in 2007 (also with OUP, New York) provisionally entitled Disciplines of Civility and Barbarity: colonialism and the critique of 'religion' as a category.