Ritual and Belief: Readings in the Anthropology of Religion / Edition 3

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Ritual and Belief: Readings in the Anthropology of Religion is a collection of 41 readings in religion, magic, and witchcraft. The choice of readings is eclectic: no single anthropological approach or theoretical perspective dominates the text. Theoretical significance, scholarly eminence of the author, and inherent interest provide the principal criteria, and each reading complements its companion chapters, which are pedagogically coherent rather than ad hoc assemblages. Included among the theoretical perspectives are structural-functionalism, structuralism, Malinowskian functionalism, cultural materialism, and cultural evolutionism; also included are the synchronic and diachronic approaches. The book offers a mixture of classic readings and more recent contributions, and the "world religions" are included along with examples from the religions of traditionally non-literate cultures. As diverse a range of religious traditions as possible has been embraced, from various ethnic groups, traditions, and places.

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Editorial Reviews

Daniel Martin Varisco
David Hicks has a magician's touch in blending essential readings in the history of an anthropological approach to religion with an array of cross-cultural case studies that draw on the earlier theorists and display the diversity of not only religious beliefs and rituals but of ethnographic interpretation itself. Distilling the large corpus of anthropological literature on religion, past and present, is no easy task. All anthologies suffer from a relevance half-life, but Professor Hicks is to be commended for building on the pillars of past scholarship with the best recent research in the field and from the field. I plan to use the third edition and look forward to the innovations to be expected in a fourth, and why not a fifth.
Sarita Tamayo-Moraga
As an instructor of students new to the field of Religious Studies, I have found David Hicks' anthology Ritual and Belief to be an invaluable tool in the classroom. The wide array of selections from different disciplines gives the students a taste of what it means to be a scholar of religion. The new edition only further enhances the text as a resource for my students.
Robert L. Winzeler
For the instructor who uses an anthology of readings either instead of an integrated text or as a supplement to one, this collection is well worth considering. No two instructors are likely to choose the same set of readings for a course in the anthropology of religion but this set has many of the classics. It can also be recommended for anyone wishing to sample what anthropologists have had to say about religion over the years.
Robert Winzeler
For the instructor who uses an anthology of readings either instead of an integrated text or as a supplement to one, this collection is well worth considering. No two instructors are likely to choose the same set of readings for a course in the anthropology of religion but this set has many of the classics. It can also be recommended for anyone wishing to sample what anthropologists have had to say about religion over the years.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780759111554
  • Publisher: AltaMira Press
  • Publication date: 6/16/2010
  • Edition description: Third Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 496
  • Product dimensions: 7.49 (w) x 10.48 (h) x 1.37 (d)

Meet the Author

David Hicks is professor of anthropology at the State University of New York, Stony Brook.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 Introduction Part 2 Chapter 1. Perspectives Chapter 3 Reading 1-1 Edward B. Tylor: Animism Chapter 4 Reading 1-2 Sigmund Freud: The Return of Totenism in Childhood Chapter 5 Reading 1-3 Emile Durkheim: The Elementary Forms of the Religious Life Part 6 Chapter 2. Myth, Cosmology, and Symbolic Classification Chapter 7 Reading 2-1 Claude Lévi-Strauss: Harelips and Twins: The Splitting of a Myth Chapter 8 Reading 2-2 Marcel Griaule and Germaine Dieterlen: The Dogon Chapter 9 Reading 2-3 Mary Douglas: Pollution Part 10 Chapter 3. Gods, Spirits, and Souls Chapter 11 Reading 3-1 Jack Goody: A Kernel of Doubt Chapter 12 Reading 3-2 Lyle B. Steadman, Craig T. Palmer, and Christopher F. Tilley: The Universality of Ancestor Worship Chapter 13 Reading 3-3 Pascal Boyer: What Makes Anthropomorphism Natural: Intuitive Ontology and Cultural Representations Part 14 Chapter 4. Ritual Chapter 15 Reading 4-1 Victor W. Turner: Ritual Symbolism, Morality, and Social Structure among the Ndembu Chapter 16 Reading 4-2 Arnold van Gennep: The Rites of Passage: Conclusions Chapter 17 Reading 4-3 Heiko Henkel: "Between Belief and Unbelief Lies the Performance of Salat": Meaning and Efficacy of a Muslim Ritual Part 18 Chapter 5. Practitioners of Ritual Chapter 19 Reading 5-1 Victor W. Turner: Religious Specialists Chapter 20 Reading 5-2 Margery Wolf: The Woman Who Didn't Become a Shaman Chapter 21 Reading 5-3 Michael J. Harner: The Sound of Rushing Water Part 22 Chapter 6. Body and Mind Chapter 23 Reading 6-1 Napolean A. Chagnon: My Adventure with Ebene: A "Religious Experience" Chapter 24 Reading 6-2 Beth A. Conklin: "Thus Are Our Bodies, Thus Was Our Custom": Mortuary Cannibalism in an Amazonian Society Chapter 25 Reading 6-3 Leonie J. Archer: "In Thy Blood Live": Gender and Ritual in the Judaeo-Christian Tradition Part 26 Chapter 7. Magic and Witchcraft Chapter 27 Reading 7-1 James G. Frazer: Sympathetic Magic Chapter 28 Reading 7-2 E. E. Evans-Pritchard: Men Bewitch Others When They Hate Them Chapter 29 Reading 7-3 George Gmelch: Baseball Magic Part 30 Chapter 8. Death Chapter 31 Reading 8-1 Walter B. Cannon: "Voodoo" Death Chapter 32 Reading 8-2 Peter Metcalf and Richard Huntington: Symbolic Associations of Death Chapter 33 Reading 8-3 David Hicks: Making the King Divine: A Case Study in Ritual Regicide from Timor Part 34 Chapter 9. Gender and Sexuality Chapter 35 Reading 9-1 Eric R. Wolf: The Virgin of Guadalupe: A Mexican National Symbol Chapter 36 Reading 9-2 Serena Nanda: The Hijras of India: Cultural and Individual Dimensions of an Institutionalized Third Gender Role Chapter 37 Reading 9-3 Stanislav Andreski: The Syphilitic Shock Part 38 Chapter 10. The Natural Environment Chapter 39 Reading 10-1 G. Reichel-Dolmatoff: Cosmology as Ecological Analysis: A View from the Rain Forest Chapter 40 Reading 10-2 Roy A. Rappaport: Ritual Regulation of Environmental Relations among a New Guinea People Chapter 41 Reading 10-3 Evon Z. Vogt: Water Witching: An Interpretation of a Ritual Pattern in a Rural American Community Part 42 Chapter 11. Agents of Change Chapter 43 Reading 11-1 Max Weber: Judaism, Christianity, and the Socio-Economic Order Chapter 44 Reading 11-2 Anthony F. C. Wallace: Revitalization Movements Chapter 45 Reading 11-3 Peter M. Worsley: Cargo Cults Part 46 Chapter 12. New Religious Movements Chapter 47 Reading 12-1 John R. Hall: Apocalypse at Jonestown Chapter 48 Reading 12-2 Eileen Barker: The Unification Church Chapter 49 Reading 12-3 Omri Elisha: Faith beyond Belief: Evangelical Protestant Conceptions of Faith and the Resonance of Anti-Humanism Part 50 Glossary Part 51 General References

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