Is it true that religion is weakening in modern times, or are we facing religious resurgence? What is fundamentalism? How does it emerge and grow? What role does religion play in ethnic and national conflicts? Is religion a fundamental driving force or do political leaders use religion for their own purposes? Do all religions oppress women? These are some of the questions addressed in this book. An Introduction to the Sociology of Religion provides an overview of sociological theories of contemporary religious life. Some chapters are organized according to topic. Others offer brief presentations of classical and contemporary sociologists from Karl Marx to Zygmunt Bauman and their perspectives on social life, including religion. Throughout the book, illustrations and examples are taken from several religious traditions.
Religion has been excluded from development studies for decades. Religious traditions have contributed greatly towards development work, yet major international players have tended to ignore its role. Recent years have shown a noticeable shift in development policy, practice and research to recognize religion as a relevant factor. This text provides a comprehensive insight into different approaches towards the understanding the relationships between religions and development studies, policy and practice. It guides readers through current debates, presenting, explaining and critically evaluating a broad range of literature and locating it within a theoretical context. The text explores the role of religion within development, from positive contributions, such as the important role that many ‘faith-based organizations’ play in education or health care, to more complicated and contested notions of impact, such as religiously inspired violence or gender inequality. The book begins with three background chapters, outlining the relevance of religions for development studies, policy and practice, and introducing the reader to the study of ‘development’ and of ‘religions’. Following these, the focus then shifts to examine a number of thematic areas, including religion, gender and development, and the implications of the ‘rise of religion’ for mainstream development studies, policy and practice in the 21st century. Each chapter contains a range of features to assist undergraduate learning, including learning objectives for each chapter, discussion of key concepts, summaries, discussion questions, further reading and websites. The book also contains over sixty boxed case studies to provide further definition, explanation, and examples of the interactions between religions and development globally. This innovative text presents religions as something that can both obstruct and aid development, encouraging readers to engage critically with the multiple ways that religion impacts on both the conceptualization of development as well the resulting project interventions. This will be of interest to undergraduate, postgraduate students and scholars interested in religious studies, development studies, and the broader study of societies and cultures.
In the past decade Muslims in Europe have been the subject of heated debates on the place and role of religion in the public space. Research into the issues involved has often used visible and formalised expressions of Muslim religiosity as its empirical point of departure. This book instead examines the microlevel workings of Muslim minority religiosity to offer a new perspective on these debates. Contributors to this volume examine the forms of Muslim religiosity which are not dependent on the official or semi-official settings of organised religion. These ethnographic studies investigate a range of examples of non-organised Islam, ranging from salafi-jihadism, to converts to Islam, to everyday spiritualities of Muslim in Europe. By exploring these neglected forms of Muslim religiosity, this book is able to build up a more nuanced picture of the role of Muslims in Europe. It will be of interest to academics, researchers and graduate students of Religion, Ethnic Studies, Migration Studies, Sociology and Political Science. This book was previously published as a special issue of Ethnic and Racial Studies.
Before the immense changes of the 2011 'Arab Spring', it was Sunni-Shia sectarian rivalry that preoccupied most political analyses of the Middle East. This book presents wide-ranging and up-to-date research that sheds light on the political, sociological and ideological processes that are affecting the dynamics within the Shia and Sunni worlds.
Using a lively narrative, The Sociology of Religion is an insightful text that follows the logic of actual research, first investigating the facts of religion in all its great diversity, including its practices and beliefs, and then analyzing actual examples of religious developments using relevant conceptual frameworks. As a result, students actively engage in the discovery, learning, and analytical processes as they progress through the textùjust as a scholar pursues knowledge in the field and then applies theoretical constructs to interpret findings.This unique text is organized around essential topics and real-life issues and examines religion both as an object of sociological analysis as well as a device for seeking personal meaning in life. While primarily sociological in focus, the text incorporates relevant interdisciplinary scholarshipùthus teaching sociological perspectives on religion while introducing students to relevant research from other fields. Sidebar features and photographs of religious figures bring the text to life for readers.Key Features and Benefits:Uses substantive and truly contemporary real-life religious issues of current interest to engage the reader in a way few other texts doCombines theory with empirical examples drawn from the United States and around the world, emphasizing a critical and analytical perspective that encourages better understanding of the material presentedFeatures discussions of emergent religions, consumerism, and the link between religion, sports, and other forms of popular cultureDraws upon interdisciplinary literature, helping students appreciate the contributions of other disciplines while primarily developing an understanding of the sociology of religion InstructorÆs Resources on CD-ROM· InstructorÆs Resources on CD-ROM contains chapter outlines, summaries, multiple-choice questions, essay questions, and short answer questions as well as illustrations from the book. Contact Customer Care at 1-800-818-SAGE (7243) to request a copy (6:00 a.m.û5:00 p.m., PST).Intended Audience: This core text is designed for upper-level undergraduate students of Sociology of Religion or Religion and Politics.
What does it mean to believe in the church? What is the relationship between the church we believe in and the church we experience? Is there an invisible church that is different from the visible? This book is an argument for an ecclesiology of the visible. The only church, the real church, is a concrete reality made up of people, just like any other fellowship. What distinguishes it as church is the presence of the triune God among those who gather in the name of Jesus, making it a sign and anticipation of the fellowship of the kingdom of God. From this premise Dr. Hegstad analyzes such issues as the relationship between church and world, mission and diakonia, church as fellowship and organization, ministries in the church, worship, and the unity of the church, as well as discussing the relationship between a sociological and a theological understanding of the church.
Engaging with some of the central issues in the sociology of religion, this volume investigates the role and significance of churches and religion in contemporary Western and Eastern Europe. Based on an extensive international research project, it offers case studies of various countries (including Finland, Ireland, Portugal, Germany, Poland, Russia, Estonia, Hungary and Croatia), as well as cross-country comparisons. Researching more precisely the present social relevance of church and religion at different levels, The Social Significance of Religion in the Enlarged Europe raises and responds to both descriptive and explanatory questions: Can we observe tendencies of religious decline in the various Western and Eastern European countries? Are we witnessing trends of religious individualization? To what extent has there been a religious upswing in the last few years? And what are the factors causing the observed processes of religious change? Marked by its broad range of data and a coherent conceptual framework, in accordance with which each chapter assesses the extent to which three important theoretical approaches in the sociology of religion - secularization theory, the market model of religion, and the individualization thesis - are applicable to the data, this book will be of interest to scholars of sociology, politics and religion exploring religious trends and attitudes in contemporary Europe.
'From finding a research topic through to the final write up, this clear guide takes the mystery out of graduate-level research. This book will help your project succeed' -James V. Spickard, Professor of Sociology, University of Redlands, US Just starting your Master's? Worried about your dissertation? This book is an indispensible guide to writing a successful Master's dissertation. The book begins by addressing issues you'll face in the early stages of writing a dissertation, such as deciding on what to research, planning your project and searching for literature online. It then guides you through different aspects of carrying out your research and writing up, helping you to: write a research proposal choose one or more methods write the introduction and conclusion discuss the literature analyse your findings edit and reference formulate research questions build your argument. The book offers guidance that other books often miss, from dealing with emotional blocks, to ways of identifying your strengths and weaknesses, and improving your writing. It addresses the social aspects of the writing process, such as choosing and working with an advisor, using social media and forming student work groups for added help and inspiration. Each chapter ends with an action plan, which is a resource section that features exercises and reflection questions designed to help you apply what you've read to your own work. SAGE Study Skills are essential study guides for students of all levels. From how to write great essays and succeeding at university, to writing your undergraduate dissertation and doing postgraduate research, SAGE Study Skills help you get the best from your time at university. Visit the SAGE Study Skills website for tips, quizzes and videos on study success!
This is the first comprehensive survey in English of research methods in the field of religious studies. It is designed to enable non-specialists and students at upper undergraduate and graduate levels to understand the variety of research methods used in the field. The aim is to create awareness of the relevant methods currently available and to stimulate an active interest in exploring unfamiliar methods, encouraging their use in research and enabling students and scholars to evaluate academic work with reference to methodological issues. A distinguished team of contributors cover a broad spectrum of topics, from research ethics, hermeneutics and interviewing, to Internet research and video-analysis. Each chapter covers practical issues and challenges, the theoretical basis of the respective method, and the way it has been used in religious studies, illustrated by case studies.
In adopting an international perspective that goes beyond the conventional framework of western theology, this volume bridges the divide between European and North American scholars through its careful retrieval of their common theoretical and research interests. Cipriani provides a critical analysis of both classical thought and contemporary currents in this readable text, aimed at both experts and students. He has achieved a broadening in the scientific approach to the study of religion.