Religion, Modernity, and Science in Japan Project

Faculty Member: Clinton Godart

This research project will explore two specific themes in the history of religion and modernity in Japan: A first focus is on conceptions of modernity and temporality in modern Japanese Buddhism. This will entail an investigation into how Japanese Buddhists since the Meiji period have responded and contributed to conceptions of progress and time in modernity. A second focus of this research project will be on the relations between science and religion in Japan. Different from research that attempts to investigate this relation in abstract terms, this project will be a historical investigation into the relations between science and religion in modern Japan since the late Tokugawa- and Meiji periods. The idea is to investigate not only the ways in which religious thought has attempted to adapt to science and technology, but also the ways in which religious thought was stimulated, shaped, and transformed by developments in science and technology. This project will result in the publication of articles, a research monograph, and an edited volume on this debate between religion, modernity, and science in Japan.