Buddhism, Poststructuralist Thought, Cultural Studies: A Profession of Faith

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Edwin Ng


This essay is a result of the author's research into Buddhism and poststructuralist theories on knowledge, self and ethics and attempts to articulate the ethico-political implications of his own practice of Vipassana (a form of Buddhist meditation) and interrogate what is called the politics of spirituality. He explores the role of faith within cultural studies by first contextualising the relevant discursive fields, then  analysing Vipassana with a ‘religious’ Foucauldian approach oriented around the critico-political aims of Foucault's late work. This elucidates how Buddhist and poststructuralist thought share certain concerns, and identifies trajectories for further inquiry.

Article Details

Secular Discomforts: Religion and Cultural Studies (Peer Reviewed)
Author Biography

Edwin Ng, Deakin University

Edwin Ng works in the School of Communication and Creative Arts at Deakin University. His current research performs autoethnographical investigations of his coterminous practice of Buddhism and cultural research so as to explore hospitable encounters between sacred and scholarly traditions, and to interrogate ethico-political debates about religion, spirituality, and the role of faith in cultural studies and micropolitics more generally.