Religion and Politics in Russia: A Reader

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Russia is not only vast, it is also culturally diverse, the core of an empire that spanned Eurasia. In addition to the majority Russian Orthodox and various other Christian groups, the Russian Federation includes large communities of Muslims, Jews, Buddhists, and members of other religious groups, some with ancient historical roots. All are in a state of ferment, and securing formal state recognition for specific communities is often daunting. This collection provides entry into the diversity of Russia's religious communities. Marjorie Mandelstam Balzer's introduction to the volume illuminates major political, social, and cultural-anthropological trends. The book is organized by religious tradition or identity, with further thematic perspectives on each set of readings. The authors include ethnologists, sociologists, political analysts, and religious leaders from many regions of the Federation. They analyze the changing dynamics of religion and politics within each community and in the context of the current drive to recentralize both political and religious authority in Moscow. Topical coverage extends from reassertions of Russian Orthodoxy to activities of Christian and Muslim missionaries to the revival of many other religions, including indigenous shamanic ones.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765624154
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 2/15/2010
  • Pages: 416
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Figures and Tables


Part I Christianity: Orthodoxy and Others

1 Russia: Trends in Orthodox Religiosity in the Twentieth Century (Statistics and Reality) Kira V. Tsekhanskaia

2 Icon in the Home Kira V. Tsekhanskaia

3 People of the Schism (1667-2007) Oleg L. Shakhnazarov

4 Russian Lutheranism: Between Protestantism, Catholicism, and Russian Orthodoxy Sergei Filatov Aleksandra Stiopina

5 Religious Searching and New Religious Organizations G. V. Eremicheva

6 The Catholic Community of St. Petersburg: The Phenomenon of Conversion and the Transformation of Power Relations Ia. B. Moravitskii

Part II Islam: Sunnis and Shi'ites in Cultural Perspective

7 "Folk Islam" and Muslim Youth of the Central and Northwest Caucasus Akhmet A. Yalykapov

8 For Us, Religion Is Life Tamara Sivertseva

9 Anyone for Polygamy? A Marriage Boom in Ingushetia Is Not Expected Abu Gadaborshev

10 Islam and Muslims in Contemporary Tatarstan Roza M. Musina

Part III Judaism: From Persecution to Revival

11 Who Are Those Mountain Jews? Mikhail Chlenov

12 Russian Jews: The Confessional Situation in the Late Twentieth Century Semen Ia. Kozlov

13 Judaism Throughout the Commonwealth of Independent States? Semen Charnyi

Part IV Buddhism: Cultural Variations

14 Lamaism Natalia L. Zhukovskaia

15 The Revival of Buddhism in Buryatia: Problems and Prospects Natalia L. Zhukovskaia

16 Buddhists of Russia at the Turn of the Twenty-first Century Natalia L. Zhukovskaia

17 Lamaism in Kalmykia Elza P. Bakaeva

Part V Old and New Religious Movements: Burkhanism and Falun Gong

18 Burkhanism in Gorny Altai Liudmilla I. Sherstova

19 ThePhenomenon of "White Faith" in Southern Siberia Andrei Vinogradov

20 Activity of the Chinese Religious Movement Falun Gong in Russia Liudmilla A. Kravchuk

Part VI Shamanism: Syncretism and Revival of Traditional Worldviews

21 Traditional Religious Beliefs of the Peoples of Sayano-Altai and Problems of Religious Syncretism Olga M. Khomushku

22 The Teleut Ritual Chymyr: Exorcism and Explanation Dmitri A. Funk

Recommended Readings


About the Editor

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