R. Joseph Hoffmann – The Scientific Study of Religion

December 29, 2006

Joe Hoffmann, formally at Oxford, is director of Committee for the Scientific Examination of Religion (CSER). He has appeared widely in the media and at venues across the United States speaking on Christian origins, the historical Jesus, the proper role of religion in society, and similar topics. He is the author or editor of a number of books, including Just War and Jihad: Violence in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
In this discussion with D.J. Grothe, Dr. Hoffmann explores the implications of science for religion, and how to study religion in a scientific way, including from scientific perspectives such as cognitive neuroscience, textual criticism and philology, and through the application of the historical sciences. He also examines bias in the study of religion, from various quarters in the academy, and how the scientific approach to religious studies can help avoid such pitfalls.