Religious power assumes many strikingly different forms, which are often regarded as unique, unrelated, and even mutually exclusive. Religion in Context, however, adopts a holistic approach and argues that these apparently contradictory mystical experiences are in fact part of a web of mutually defining and sustaining elements. Stressing the importance of rigorous social contextualisation, I. M. Lewis analyses phenomena such as spirit-possession, witchcraft, cannibalism, and shamanism, revealing connections between them and with the world religions. This expanded and updated edition illuminates critical aspects of religious power, and demonstrates the value of a comparative approach to formulating anthropological theory. It will be of value to students of anthropology, religion, and to anyone concerned with the nature of religion in the modern world.
Publisher: Cambridge University Press