In Society, Spirituality, and the Sacred, Swenson draws on both Weber's Charisma and Routinization of Charisma and Thomas O'Dea's Dilemmas of the Institutionalization of Religion to reveal how religion has both a positive and negative effect on people. Moving from the individual experience of the sacred to the more institutional religious experience, the book explores the many manifestations of religious life and offers a synthesis of folk religions, new religions, the New Age Movement, and the challenges posed by the secularization of contemporary life. This approach to studying the sociology of religion offers a more challenging and provocative opportunity for students compared to other texts on the market. The second edition has been thoroughly revised and updated to integrate the latest developments in the field and to offer a more global approach to the study of religion. New chapters on women and religion and new religious movements have been added and discussions of Islam, indigenous religions and postmodernism have been significantly expanded.
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
Number of pages: 464
Weight: 640 g
Dimensions: 231 x 157 x 36 mm
Edition: 2nd Revised edition
"Kudos to Donald Swenson for this second edition of his highly valuable text in the social scientific approach to religion. "Society, Spirituality, and the Sacred" is much more than the typical survey of its subject. In particular, I know of no other work that makes such creative use of the 'dilemmas' (first outlined by Thomas F. O'Dea) that confront the organization of faith. Regardless of their level of study, readers who aspire to a better understanding of the field will discover here a perspective on the sacred in the present age that is both learned and lucid. Because of the uncommonly broad and sensitive view that it incorporates, Professor Swenson's book challenges today's students, born into increasingly pluralistic settings, to develop a more inclusive awareness of religious orientations in their world." - Kevin J. Christiano, University of Notre Dame
""Society, Spirituality, and the Sacred" makes a strong case for the continuing relevance of a Weberian approach to the sociology of religion, and does so in a comprehensive and student-friendly manner. The new edition is a rarity: a well-argued case for a particular approach to religion which can also serve as an accessible and up-to-date introduction to the field." - William Ramp, University of Lethbridge