I have blogged about René Girard before: the author of Violence and the Sacred exposes what he considers to be the root cause of the sacred—sacrificial ritual as the regulator of violent impulses—only to promote Christianity as something legitimate and distinct from all other superstitious belief systems. Eric Gans singles out the genesis of language as the driving causal force—the originary event—behind the evolution of the human race. Isolating this as a single factor both reflects the postmodernist semiotic-fetishist agenda and constitutes a radical form of idealism once again converting anthropology to a pseudoscience. And note how the term "originary event" resonates with religious origin myth.
Here is a particularly revealing as well as sickening specimen of this ideology:
Eric Gans, "The Unique Source of Religion and Morality," Anthropoetics I, no. 1 (June 1995)
Why doesn't it surprise me that Gans is in the French Department (of UCLA)? Anthropoetics, what a steaming load: there are no atheists in foxholes, and all religion is an outgrowth of semiotics. Postmodernism has been exploiting religion for some time. Opportunists of a feather . . . Get a load of footnote 1:
Generative anthropology articulates our postmodern dissatisfaction with the Enlightenment version of secularization, which either denies the transcendental altogether or reduces it to the most abstract version of the metaphysical "first mover" (Deism), without ever explaining the transcendentality of the language it uses in the process. Revolutionary atheism is an inverted religious fundamentalism that makes use of verticality to tell us that the vertical does not exist.
This article is equally delicious:
McKenna, Andrew. (2001). "Signs of the Times: Rorty and Girard," Paper read at COV&R Antwerp.
Here is a bibliography of this trash:
Bibliography of Generative Anthropology
There are no standards and there is no accountability. Academia is like the rest of society: a zoo with all the cages open and the dumb beasts running amok.