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Book: Method Today

Chapter: 19. Interpretation and the Study of Religion

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.34437


My goal in this chapter is to clarify and defend the interpretive approach in the academic study of religion, and I do this by asking and answering three questions that have been contentious in the debates about interpretation: (1) Can one understand human behavior independent of the action’s meaning? (2)Does interpretation require access to people’s mental states?(3) Does interpretation preclude causal explanation?

Chapter Contributors

  • Kevin Schilbrack ( - ks) 'Appalachian State University'