Minority Religions and Fraud: In Good Faith

Minority Religions and Fraud: In Good Faith

by Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist

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Analysing both fraud and religion as social constructs with different functions and meanings attributed to them, this book raises issues that are central to debates about the limits of religious toleration in diverse societies, and the possible harm (as well as benefits) that religious organisations can visit upon society and individuals. There has already been a lively debate concerning the structural context in which abuse, especially sexual abuse, can be perpetrated within religion. Contributors to the volume proceed from the premise that similar arguments about ways in which structure and power may be conducive to abuse can be made about fraud and deception. Both can contribute to abuse, yet they are often less easily demonstrated and proven, hence less easily prosecuted.

With a focus on minority religions, the book offers a comparative overview of the concept of religious fraud by bringing together analyses of different types of fraud or deception (financial, bio-medical, emotional, breach of trust and consent). Contributors examine whether fraud is necessarily intentional (or whether that is in the eye of the beholder); certain structures may be more conducive to fraud; followers willingly participate in it. The volume includes some chapters focused on non-Western beliefs (Juju, Occult Economies, Dharma Lineage), which have travelled to the West and can be found in North American and European metropolitan areas.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781472409133
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing Ltd
Publication date: 09/28/2014
Series: Ashgate Inform Series on Minority Religions and Spiritual Movements
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist is the deputy director of Inform, a non-profit information centre specializing in minority religious and fringe political movements, based at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). Her research on the second generation of sectarian movements and the impact their segregated childhoods have had, is due to be published. Further publications include an article entitled ‘Beliefs in Possession’ in The Devil’s Children. From Spirit Possession to Witchcraft: New Allegations That Affect Children, edited by Inform’s research fellow Emeritus Professor Jean la Fontaine (2009), and ‘Children in New Religions: Contested Duties of Care’, Journal of the International Society for the Study of New Religious Movements 1(2): 25-48 (2010).

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction, Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist; New religions and fraud: a double constructionist approach, David G. Bromley; Minority religions and fraud: preliminary theories on ritual deception, Holly Folk; Bona fide?, Amanda van Eck Duymaer van Twist; Between faith and fraudulence? Sincerity and sacrifice in prosperity Christianity, Simon Coleman; Folk healing, authenticity and fraud, Stuart McClean and Ronnie Moore; Sex-work and ceremonies: the trafficking of young Nigerian women into Britain, Hermione Harris; Food, faith and fraud in two minority religions, Marion S. Goldman; Miracle makers and money takers: healers, prosperity preachers and fraud in contemporary Tanzania, Martin Lindhardt; When fraud is part of a spiritual path: a Tibetan lama’s plays on reality and illusion, Marion Dapsance; Faith lends substance? Trickery and deception within religious and spiritual movements, Michael Coffey; The Zen master and Dharma transmission: a seductive mythology, Stuart Lachs; Index.

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