Storytracking includes engaging accounts of many of the colorful figures involved in the nineteenth-century development of Central Australia, and it is an argument for a multiperspectival theory of history. It presents descriptions of an important aboriginal culture--the Arrernte--and it critically examines ethnography. It exposes the colonialist underbelly of all modern academic culture study, yet it embraces the situation as one of creative potential outlining an interactivist epistemology with which to negotiate the classical alternatives of objectivism and subjectivism. Gill presents an examination of the emergent academic study of religion focused on two exemplary scholars--Mircea Eliade and Jonathan Smith--offering a play theory of religion as the basis for innovative critical discussions of text, comparison, interpretation, the definition of religion, academic writing style, and the role of "the other."
Based on painstakingly detailed research, Gill exposes disturbing and confounding dimensions of the modern world, particularly academia. Yet, beyond the pessimism that often characterizes postmodernity, he charts an optimistic and creative course framed in the terms of play.
Storytracking is an academic work that is based on the careful analysis of extensive texts, many not publicly available. The analysis requires careful comparison of one text with another, often its cited source, at the level of the word and even the character. Because of the cost of publication these supportive materials are presented in an electronic medium rather than on paper. Many of the comparisons to be found below facilitate review by juxtaposing the texts in columns. Key words and phrases found in the compared texts are emphasized in bold to assist the reviewer. The analyses are described and the findings of the comparisons are summarized in separate sections. A table of contents links to the respective sections.