Encyclopedia of Religion and Film

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More About This Textbook


Technology has enabled films to reach much wider audiences, enabling today's viewers to access a dizzying number of films that employ diverse symbolism and communicate a vast array of viewpoints. Encyclopedia of Religion and Film will provide such an audience with the tools to begin their own exploration of the deeper meanings of these films and grasp the religious significance within.

Organized alphabetically, this encyclopedia provides more than 90 entries on the larger religious traditions, the major film-producing regions of the globe, the films that have stirred controversy, the most significant religious symbols, and the more important filmmakers. The included topics provide substantially more information on the intersection of religion and film than any of the similar volumes currently available. While the emphasis is on the English-speaking world and the films produced therein, there is also substantial representation of non-English, non-Western film and filmmakers, providing significant intercultural coverage to the topic.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Clearly written entries will offer much discussion material for anyone interested in religion and film, either as separate or combined disciplines. Recommended for academic and large public libraries."


Library Journal

"It provides an interesting approach to a topic that is central to many people's lives. Though classified under film, it would have uses in religion collections as well."



"Private church-related colleges, theological seminaries, and public libraries should find this volume helpful. Summing Up: Recommended."



"Although the American cinema dominates the films represented in this work there are still many

international films and directors featured. The resource examines an eclectic list of film titles and is highly recommended for public libraries and academic libraries that support the study of film, religion and philosophy."


Reference Reviews

Library Journal
In recent years, the intersection of religion and film has become a niche field of study. To help further the discussion, Mazur (religious studies, Virginia Wesleyan Coll.) has edited a volume dedicated to the study of religion and religious themes in film. It contains 91 alphabetically organized entries that each run roughly two to five pages in length and are signed by scholars with backgrounds in religion, film, and cultural studies. Entry topics focus on religious traditions (Judaism, the Black Church, Protestantism); directors (Bergman, Fellini, Kubrick, Truffaut); geography (Bollywood, Britain, Japan); and religious characters, concepts, and symbols (angels, God, clergy, Bible films, holidays). Some entries are dedicated to particular films and film genres, including the Holocaust, The Matrix trilogy, and censorship in Hollywood. Each article concludes with See also cross-references and a short bibliography. In some cases, images from the films referenced are included. Rounding out the volume is an extensive filmography, bibliography, and index. The text primarily concentrates on the mainline religions of Catholicism, Judaism, and Islam, but it also explores films of other traditions including voodoo, Wicca, and those of Native Americans and other indigenous peoples. Although films from the English-speaking world make up most of the scope, attention is also given to non-English films from Africa, China, and Latin America. BOTTOM LINE The Routledge Companion to Religion and Film (2009) covers similar ground but is organized differently—these titles complement rather than compete with each other. Clearly written entries will offer much discussion material for anyone interested in religion and film, either as separate or combined disciplines. Recommended for academic and large public libraries.—Jackie Parascandola, Columbia Univ. Libs., New York
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780313330728
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/31/2011
  • Pages: 644
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 1.90 (d)

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