Andrew Ventimiglia - Copyrighting God

Thursday 16 May 2019
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
In store at Avid Reader Bookshop
Register until 16 May 2019 6:00 PM

This event commences at 6.30pm. Printed tickets are not issued and your booking will be on a door list under your surname.

Join Dr Andrew Ventimiglia for the launch of Copyrighting God: Ownership of the Sacred in American Religion.

"Copyrighting God has many gems to offer to many disciplines, from religious studies to law, media studies, American studies and history, and cultural studies. Ventimiglia's gift to communicate complex arguments in crystal-clear prose will gain this book many admirers, from the classroom to the public sphere." Mario Biagioli, Distinguished Professor, University of California, Davis

Copyrighting God provides the first detailed account of how American religious organizations used copyright in sacred texts not simply for economic gain but also for social organization and control. Including chapters on the angelic authorship of The Urantia Book, Mary Baker Eddy's use of copyright to construct the Christian Science Church, interdenominational disputes in the Worldwide Church of God, and the Church of Scientology's landmark lawsuits against Internet service providers, this book examines how religious copyright owners mobilized the law in order to organize communities, protect sacred goods, produce new forms of spiritual identity, and even enchant the material world. In doing so, this book demonstrates that these organizations all engaged in complex efforts to harmonize legal arguments and theological rationales in order to care for and protect religious media, thereby coming to a nuanced understanding of secular law as a resource for, and obstacle to, their unique spiritual objectives.

"Focusing on disputes around intellectual property, Ventimiglia demonstrates how religious communities rely on secular law to define and protect their religious knowledge. I can't imagine a more innovative, more timely, or more urgently needed investigation of the dynamics between law, religion, publishing, and technology. Ventimiglia's book makes a powerful contribution to our understanding of how contemporary religion takes shape." Ari Y. Kelman, Jim Joseph Professor of Education and Jewish Studies Stanford University Graduate School of Education

Dr Andrew Ventimiglia is a Research Fellow in the TC Beirne School of Law at the University of Queensland and incoming Assistant Professor of Mass Media with a specialization in media law and ethics at Illinois State University. Dr Ventimiglia’s research focuses on the history and cultural effects of intellectual property. He joined the TC Beirne School of Law in 2016 as part of a research team working on the ARC Laureate project 'Harnessing Intellectual Property to Build Food Security,’ during which he has conducted research on the historical connections between food regulation and intellectual property law in the 19th and 20th centuries. He was awarded his PhD in Cultural Studies from University of California – Davis in 2015 and also holds a Master of Arts in Cinema Studies and a Certificate from the Culture and Media Program from New York University.