The Study of Religion: A Reader / Edition 1

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Religious studies draws on work by anthropologists, sociologists, philosophers, theologians, and others for an understanding of its subject matter. Many influential works are not written by specialist scholars in religious studies, but have still had a notable impact on our understanding of the concept of religion, of particular religious ideas, or on how religion should be studied. It is therefore essential for any student to be familiar with some, if not most, of these writings.

This new Reader introduces students of religion to its most common current perspectives and approaches, and provides them with an understanding of how the discipline developed. Each section includes an introduction and suggestions for further reading, and can be used alongside the editors' accompanying textbook, Introduction to the Study of Religion.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"What sets The Study of Religion: A Reader apart is not only its scope, the inclusion of influential contemporary readings, and its discussion questions, but also that it includes critiques of the field and invites readers to take them seriously as well." - Russell T. McCutcheon, University of Alabama, USA

"I can think of no better selection of scholarly texts with which to introduce students to the breadth of approaches to the academic study of religion. Like its complementary volume, Introduction to the Study of Religion, this balanced collection of old and new is guided by pedagogy rather than ideology." - Michel Desjardins, Wilfrid Laurier University, Canada

"The Study of Religion is an excellent reader—a thoughtful and creative selection of works on religion and ritual from a variety of disciplinary, historical, and cultural perspectives. It will give students in particular a clear sense of why religion still matters to our understanding of the social world. Highly recommended." - Matthew Engelke, London School of Economics , UK

"In this volume the editors have collected a set of absolute ‘must-reads’ for anyone interested in religion and the study of it. The contributions range wide across time and academic disciplines. Harding and Rodrigues are to be commended for having assembled with an open mind a broad scope of essays, leaving space for positive voices as well as for those critical and sceptical." - Jeppe Sinding Jensen, Aarhus University, Denmark

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415495868
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 10/7/2013
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 528
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Hillary Rodrigues received his B.Sc. in Chemistry from McGill in 1975. However, extensive travel in the Americas, Europe, and Asia fostered an interest in education and the study of religion and culture. After several years of teaching in both alternative and conventional educational settings, he obtained his BA ('86), MA ('88) and PhD (93) in Religious Studies from McMaster University. He received the U of L Distinguished Teaching Award in 2000. He has served as Chair of the Anthropology Department of the University of Lethbridge.

John S. Harding received his BA in Asian Studies with a minor in Religion from the University of Puget Sound in 1994. He pursued his graduate work in Religious Studies at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia along with research in Japan and one year at the University of Cambridge in England. John received his Ph.D. from Penn in 2003 shortly before joining the Religious Studies Department at the University of Lethbridge.

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Table of Contents

@contents: Part One: Introduction Part Two: How Religion Began to be Studied: Traditional Perspectives Part Three: Studying Religion within Communities: Social and Cultural Perspectives Part Four: How People Experience Religion: Perspectives in the Study of Religious Consciousness and Perception Part Five: Judging Religion: Critical Perspectives and Evaluations Part Six: Studying Religion in Context: Perspectives and Conclusions.


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