The Oxford Handbook of the Study of Religion

ISBN : 9780198729570

Michael Stausberg; Steven Engler
864 Pages
171 x 246 mm
Pub date
Nov 2016
Oxford Handbooks
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The Oxford Handbook of the Study of Religions provides a comprehensive overview of the academic study of religions. Written by an international team of leading scholars, its fifty-one chapters are divided thematically into seven sections. The first section addresses five major conceptual aspects of research on religion. Part two surveys eleven main frameworks of analysis, interpretation, and explanation of religion. Reflecting recent turns in the humanities and social sciences, part three considers eight forms of the expression of religion. Part four provides a discussion of the ways societies and religions, or religious organizations, are shaped by different forms of allocation of resources (i.e., economy). Other chapters in this section consider law, the media, nature, medicine, politics, science, sports, and tourism. Part five reviews important developments, distinctions, and arguments for each of the selected topics. The study of religion addresses religion as a historical phenomenon and part six looks at seven historical processes. Religion is studied in various ways by many disciplines, and this Handbook shows that the study of religion is an academic discipline in its own right. The disciplinary profile of this volume is reflected in part seven, which considers the history of the discipline and its relevance. Each chapter in the Handbook references at least two different religions to provide fresh and innovative perspectives on key issues in the field. This authoritative collection will advance the state of the discipline and is an invaluable reference for students and scholars.


List of Figures and Tables
List of Contributors
Michael Stausberg and Steven Engler: Introduction: Aims, Scope, and Organization

Part I. Religion
1 Michael Stausberg & Mark Q. Gardiner: Definition
2 Giovanni Casadio: Historicizing and Translating Religion
3 Michael Stausberg & Steven Engler: Theories of Religion
4 Heinz Streib and Constantin Klein: Religion and Spirituality
5 Lois Lee: Non-religion

Part II. Theoretical Approaches
6 Armin W. Geertz: Cognitive Science
7 Peter Seele & Lucas Zapf: Economics
8 John H. Shaver, Benjamin Grant Purzycki, and Richard Sosis: Evolutionary Theory
9 Darlene Juschka: Feminism and Gender Theory
10 Gavin Flood: Hermeneutics
11 Matthew Day: Marxism
12 Arvind Mandair: Postcolonialism
13 Mark Q. Gardiner and Steven Engler: Semantics
14 Robert A. Yelle: Semiotics
15 Paul-Francois Tremlett: (Post)-structuralism
16 Philip A. Mellor and Chris Shilling: Social Theory

Part III. Modes
17 Volkhard Krech: Communication
18 David Morgan: Materiality
19 Jeppe Sinding Jensen: Narrative
20 Axel Michaels and William S. Sax: Performance
21 Rosalind I. J. Hackett: Sound
22 David Chidester: Space
23 David Chidester: Time

Part IV. Environments
24 Anne Koch: Economy
25 Benjamin Schonthal: Law
26 Oliver Kruger: Media
27 Adrian Ivakhiv: Nature
28 Pamela Klassen: Medicine
29 Hubert Seiwert: Politics
30 Laura J. Vollmer and Kocku von Stuckrad: Science
Carole M. Cusack: Sports
Alex Norman: Tourism

Part V. Topics
33 Jason C. Bivins: Belief
34 John Corrigan: Emotion
35 Craig Martin: Experience
36 Christoph Auffarth: Gift and Sacrifice
37 Gustavo Benavides: Gods
38 Henrik Bogdan: Initiation and Transitions
39 Manfred Hutter: Priests, Prophets, Sorcerers
40 Hugh B. Urban: Purity
41 Gavin Flood: Salvation

Part VI. Processes
42 Steve Bruce: Differentiation
43 Albert de Jong: The Disintegration and Death of Religions
44 Asonzeh Ukah: Expansion
45 Manuel A. Vasquez and David Garbin: Globalization
46 Jorg Rupke: Individualization and Privatization
47 Olav Hammer: Tradition and Innovation
48 Jeremy Carrette: Objectification and Commodification
49 Paul Christopher Johnson: Syncretism and Hybridization

Part VII. The Discipline
50 Michael Stausberg: History
51 Thomas A. Tweed: Relevance

About the author: 

Michael Stausberg is Professor of Religion at the University of Bergen. He was formerly a fellow at the Max Weber Center for Advanced Cultual and Social Studies and is a member of the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters. His previous publications include Contemporary Theories of Religion: A Critical Companion (Routledge, 2009), Religion and Tourism: Crossroads, Destinations and Encounters (Routledge, 2010), and Zarathustra and Zoroastrianism (Equinox, 2008). He is co-editor of The Wiley Blackwell Companion to Zoroastrianism (with Yuhan Sohrab-Dinshaw Vevaina; Wiley Blackwell, 2015) and The Routledge Handbook of Research Methods in the Study of Religion (with Steven Engler; Routledge, 2013).; Steven Engler is Professor of Religious Studies at Mount Royal University in Calgary. He is Professor Colaborador in the Programa de Estudos Pos-Graduados em Ciencias da Religiao at the Pontificia Universidade Catolica de Sao Paulo and Affiliate Professor with the Department of Religion, Concordia University, Montreal. He is the co-editor of Historicizing Tradition in the Study of Religion (with Gregory Price Grieve; De Gruyter, 2005).

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