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From the Publisher
"Intended as an introductory reference for a high school level or general readership, this set comprises six volumes, one each on Judaism, Confucianism and Taoism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism. A tremendous amount of information has been distilled into accessible language and a uniform format; students writing comparative papers will find this consistency useful. In each separately edited volume, a timeline and introduction are followed by narrative chapters on the history of the religion's foundation; texts and major tenets; branches of the religion and their distinctive doctrines and structure; practice worldwide - including demographic statistics; rituals and holidays; and notable people in the history of each religion."
Reference & Research Book News
"[I]deal for high school students and a recommended purchase for public and school libraries….The set is a must for libraries serving older teens or early college age students where there has been a demonstrated need for materials on religious diversity."
"Describing a major world religion in one volume of less than 200 pages of text (not counting fore and end matter) is a daunting task, nobly achieved by the six authors of this set. According to its publicity material and set preface, the set is intended for high-school students and the general reader, and it is true to its audience. The text is fluid, fluent, and as uncomplicated as possible. Each volume contains an introduction by the author, time line, and narrative chapters on the history, texts and tenets, branches, practice worldwide (including demographics), rituals and holidays, and major figures….Most school and public libraries will find this set very useful for locating the important information students and the general public are looking for when studying religions. The volumes are straightforward and well structured to help locate the answers to most questions asked about beliefs, practices, holidays, and definitions of the major religions people encounter."
Booklist/Reference Books Bulletin
"The volumes include a time line, an introduction, discussions of texts and tenets, branches, practice, rituals and holidays, and major figures, as well as a bibliography and a glossary."
School Library Journal
"This set is designed to provide a basic reference for high school and lower-division undergraduate students. Each volume covers one religion and is divided into the following sections: Timeline, History of Foundation, Text and Major Tenets, Branches, Practice Worldwide (includes demographic statistics and weekly worship traditions), Rituals and Holidays, Major Figures, Glossary, and Bibliography. An index for the entire set is provided….Lower-level undergraduates and high school students."
"This work can confidently be recommended to libraries and teachers….I would buy it without hesitation for the school and small college library, and regard it as a useful series of summaries of six highly complex (and often obscurely and controversially explained) faith/belief/ideology systems….Neatly and strongly bound and generally good paper, subtly distilled for those starting out on their studies and for readers keen to remind themselves about faith essentials, alert to modern changes and challenges, and providing sound reading at the intended level, this introduction is recommended."
"[T]his is an excellent series. It is up to date in both language and presentation, and would be valuable in any library both as a reference work and as a comprehensive introduction to the field."
Catholic Library World
"For a comprehensive overview which reaches into general-interest and public library collections, Introduction to the World's Major Religions is a 'must': it packs in six volumes by different authors: each of which provides an introduction, timeline of events, history and religious foundation analysis, and provides details on branches, major tenets, and rituals….[c]entral to a strong collection….The books cover all major events, issues, and religious practices under each heading and pack in source material references suitable for further, in-depth research; yet retain an accessibility which lends to general reading browsing….[c]ompetes well with other multivolume coverages, blending scholarly with general-interest approaches."
Midwest Book Review - Internet Bookwatch
"Because of its focus on the six major religious movements, Introduction to the World's Major Religions will be of interest particularly to high school, public, junior college, and undergraduate libraries."
Reference & User Services Quarterly