Study of Religion: An Introduction to Key Ideas and Methods

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Increasingly, recognition is given to the importance of methodology in the study of religion and methodological issues are generally taught to first year students in order to equip them for systematic academic study of the topic. Unfortunately many of the theories that relate to methodology are explained in a highly complex way, which even advanced students find it hard to understand.  

This book unravels the complexity of these issues for students by introducing the history and methodology pertaining to the study of religion (including ideas of key theorists) and by discussing the main problems in current scholarship in world religions.

In addition to theories relating to Religious Studies, examples will be drawn from a variety of the world's historical religious traditions, spanning the range of major ones and some minor ones. The student will in this way gain some understanding of the fundamental ideas of the world's religions as well as an introduction to methods of study.  

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"The book’s outstanding introductory chapter provides a gateway for discussing the various dimensions of the study of religion. Overall, The Study of Religion 2nd edition is an excellent resource and contribution to the field." - Stuart Sarbacker, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Oregon State University, USA

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826464484
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 8/28/2007
  • Pages: 440
  • Product dimensions: 6.86 (w) x 9.57 (h) x 1.14 (d)

Meet the Author

George D. Chryssides is Honorary Research Fellow in Contemporary Religion at the University of Birmingham, UK.

Ron Geaves is Professor of the Comparative Study of Religion at Liverpool Hope University, UK. He is Co-editor of the Journal of Fieldwork in Religion and the Journal of Religions of South Asia.

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Table of Contents

1. What is Religion?

2. Levels of Religion.

3. History of Scholarship

4. 'World Religion'

5. Phenomenology and its Critics.
6. Authenticity and Diversity.
7. Gender and Religion.
8. Field Work.
9. Quantitative Data in RS.
10. The Question of Truth.
11. Current Trends.
12. Summary and Conclusions

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