Cover image for Religions in the modern world : traditions and transformations
Religions in the modern world : traditions and transformations
Woodhead, Linda.
Publication Information:
London ; New York : Routledge, 2002.
Physical Description:
xvii, 393 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Subject Term:
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Home Location
Central Library BL80.2 .R417 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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This is a guide to contemporary religions. It brings together the methods of both the humanities and the social sciences to offer an introduction to work in the study of religion. Religion in the Modern World is comprehensive in its coverage. It considers the main religious traditions of both Asia and the West, as well as new forms of religion and spirituality such as New Age. In addition to providing an historical introduction to each religion, the volume offers detailed and original analysis of their interactions with modernity. Topics covered include: religion, colonialism and postcolonialism; religious nationalism; women and religion; religion and globalization; securalization and sacralization; religion and authority; religion and the turn to self; the rise of new spiritualities.

Author Notes

The editors, Linda Woodhead, Paul Fletcher, Hiroko Kawanami and David Smith are all members of the Religious Studies Department at Lancaster University, one of the leading international institutions in the study of religion.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

The editors, all from the religious studies department of Lancaster University, have created an excellent textbook on contemporary religions and spiritualities. Although designed for undergraduate students, the work contains newly synthesized material that will interest both advanced students and the reading public. The text explores the engagement of religion with the contemporary world and the challenges of modernity. Parts 1 and 2 feature separate chapters on various Asian and Western religions, covering sources and resources, interactions with modernity, prospects for the future, a summary, key terms, and further reading. The most interesting chapters are those in Part 3 ("Themes and Trends"), which broach such subjects as secularization, globalization, politics, gender, and the move from religion to spirituality. Few works synthesize contemporary religious trends the way this volume does, but the World Christian Encyclopedia (Oxford Univ., 2001) and Moojan Momen's The Phenomenon of Religion (Oneworld, 1998) have contributed. The one drawback here is the failure to cover the Baha'i religion. Recommended for all public and academic libraries. William P. Collins, Library of Congress (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Studying Religion and ModernityLinda Woodhead
Part 1 Asian
1 HinduismDavid Smith
2 BuddhismCathy Cantwell and Koko Kawanami
3 SikhismChristopher Shakle
5 Chinese Religions
6 Japanese ReligionsRobert Kisala
Part 2 Western
6 JudaismSeth Kunin
7 ChristianityLinda Woodhead
8 IslamDavid Waines
9 Religion in AfricaCharlie Gore
10 Native American ReligionsHoward L. Harrod
11 New age ReligionWouter Handgraaff
12 New Religious MovementsElisabeth Arweck
Part 3 Themes and Trends
13 Secularization and SacrelizationPeter Berger
14 Religion and GlobalizaitonDavid Lehmann
15 Religion and PoliticsJeffrey Haynes
16 Religion and GenderLinda Woodhead
17 The Spiritual Revolution: From Religion to SpiritualityPaul Heelas

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