Since taking the editorial helm of CSSH in 2006, I have watched several intellectual trends shift and gather momentum. Postsocialist and postcolonial studies are merging into a more generalized interest in the politics of empire. Critical impulses once associated with the “post” approaches have found their way into studies of secularism, conversion, translation, and state effects. Increasingly, these topics are analyzed as transregional processes that operate across religious and political logics. In 2009, our first CSSH Conversation dealt with matters of tolerance and conversion in the Ottoman Empire, and in 2010 we filled an entire issue with essays on secularism (52-3). In each case, the ground we explored was contested, but themes of governmentality and moral transformation were central, and the terms of debate were broadly shared.
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