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Series Editors: Wolfgang Marx and Heather Sparling
Death in History, Culture, and Society is a peer-reviewed interdisciplinary series of monographs and edited volumes. It is dedicated to social and cultural engagements with death across the globe. This includes synchronous studies of death during a specific period within a culture and studies with a cross-cultural approach; diachronous studies of death-related issues within a region, genre or culture; explorations of new death-related concepts and methodologies; or specific death-related inquiries. The focus may lie on concepts and definitions of death and dying; death rituals, both sacred and secular; social or cultural responses to death; issues of memory and identity related to death and loss; as well as individual, social or political strategies of integrating death and the dead into life.
Author: Sean Dunwoody
In an age characterized by religious conflict, Protestant and Catholic Augsburgers remained largely at peace. How did they do this? This book argues that the answer is in the “emotional practices” Augsburgers learned and enacted—in the home, in marketplaces and other sites of civic interaction, in the council house, and in church. Augsburg’s continued peace depended on how Augsburgers felt—as neighbors, as citizens, and believers—and how they negotiated the countervailing demands of these commitments. Drawing on police records, municipal correspondence, private memoranda, internal administrative documents and other records revealing everyday behavior, experience, and thought, Sean Dunwoody shows how Augsburgers negotiated the often-conflicting feelings of being a good believer and being a good citizen and neighbor.
The Spirit’s Empowerment of the Early Jesus Community
What does Luke mean when he describes the Spirit as gift (Acts 2:38)? This study explores the social implications of gift-giving in the Greco-Roman world, arguing that gifts initiate and sustain relationships. Therefore, the description of the Spirit as gift is inherently social, which is shown in the Spirit’s empowerment of the teaching, unity, meals, sharing of possessions and worship of the early Jesus community. The Spirit as gift then leads us to see that the early Jesus community is “the community of the Holy Spirit.”
Miracle accounts provide a window into the views and conceptions of the laity, the uneducated, women, and even children, whose voices are mostly missing from other types of sources. They are not, however, simple to use. This volume offers a methodological insight into the medieval world of the miraculous. Consisting of 15 cutting-edge articles by leading scholars in the field, it provides versatile approaches to the origins, methods, and recording techniques of various types of miracle narratives. It offers fascinating case studies from across Europe, which show how miracle accounts can be used as a source for various topics such as lived religion, healing, protection, and family and gender.

Contributors are Nicole Archambeau, Leigh Ann Craig, Ildikó Csepregi, Jussi Hanska, Emilia Jamroziak, Sari Katajala-Peltomaa, Jenni Kuuliala, Iona McCleery, Jyrki Nissi, Roberto Paciocco, Donald S. Prudlo, Marika Räsänen, Jonas Van Mulder, and Louise Elizabeth Wilson.
Author: Hugh Morrison
At Christmas 1936, Presbyterian children in New Zealand raised over £400 for an x-ray machine in a south Chinese missionary hospital. From the early 1800s, thousands of children in the British world had engaged in similar activities, raising significant amounts of money to support missionary projects world-wide. But was money the most important thing? Hugh Morrison argues that children’s education was a more important motive and outcome. This is the first book-length attempt to bring together evidence from across a range of British contexts. In particular it focuses on children’s literature, the impact of imperialism and nationalism, and the role of emotions.
Editor: Alexandre Papas
This volume describes the social and practical aspects of Islamic mysticism (Sufism) across centuries and geographical regions. Its authors seek to transcend ethereal, essentialist and “spiritualizing” approaches to Sufism, on the one hand, and purely pragmatic and materialistic explanations of its origins and history, on the other. Covering five topics (Sufism’s economy, social role of Sufis, Sufi spaces, politics, and organization), the volume shows that mystics have been active socio-religious agents who could skillfully adjust to the conditions of their time and place, while also managing to forge an alternative way of living, worshiping and thinking.

Basing themselves on the most recent research on Sufi institutions, the contributors to this volume substantially expand our understanding of the vicissitudes of Sufism by paying special attention to its organizational and economic dimensions, as well as complex and often ambivalent relations between Sufis and the societies in which they played a wide variety of important and sometimes critical roles.

Contributors are Mehran Afshari, Ismail Fajrie Alatas, Semih Ceyhan, Rachida Chih, Nathalie Clayer, David Cook, Stéphane A. Dudoignon, Daphna Ephrat, Peyvand Firouzeh, Nathan Hofer, Hussain Ahmad Khan, Catherine Mayeur-Jaouen, Richard McGregor, Ahmet Yaşar Ocak, Alexandre Papas, Luca Patrizi, Paulo G. Pinto, Adam Sabra, Mark Sedgwick, Jean-Jacques Thibon, Knut S. Vikør and Neguin Yavari
The Distribution of Wealth and the Making of Social Relations in Northern Nigeria
Author: Dauda Abubakar
In ‘They Love Us Because We Give Them’ Zakāt, Dauda Abubakar describes the practice of Zakāt in northern Nigeria. Those who practice this pillar of Islam annually deduct Zakāt from their wealth and distribute it to the poor and needy people within their vicinity, mostly their friends, relatives and neighbours.
The practice of giving and receiving Zakāt in northern Nigeria often leads to the establishment of social relations between the rich and needy. Dauda Abubakar provides details of the social relationship in the people’s interpersonal dealings with one another that often lead to power relations, high table relations etc. The needy reciprocate the Zakāt they collect in many ways, respecting and given high positions to the rich in society.
Volume Editor: Dustin J. Byrd
In The Critique of Religion and Religion’s Critique: On Dialectical Religiology, Dustin J. Byrd compiles numerous essays honouring the life and work of the Critical Theorist, Rudolf J. Siebert. His “dialectical religiology,” rooted in the critical theory of the Frankfurt School, especially Theodor Adorno, Max Horkheimer, Walter Benjamin, Herbert Marcuse, Erich Fromm, Leo Löwenthal, and Jürgen Habermas, is both a theory and method of understanding religion’s critique of modernity and modernity’s critique of religion. Born out of the Enlightenment and its most important thinkers, i.e. Kant, Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud, religion is understood to be dialectical in nature. It contains within it both revolutionary and emancipatory elements, but also reactionary and regressive elements, which perpetuate mankind’s continual debasement, enslavement, and oppression. Thus, religion by nature is conflicted within itself and thus stands against itself. Dialectical Religiology attempts to rescue those elements of religion from the dustbin of history and reintroduce them into society via their determinate negation. As such, it attempts to resolve the social, political, theological, and philosophical antagonisms that plague the modern world, in hopes of producing a more peaceful, justice-filled, equal, and reconciled society. The contributors to this book recognize the tremendous contributions of Dr. Rudolf J. Siebert in the fields of philosophy, sociology, history, and theology, and have profited from his long career. This book attempts to honour that life and work.

Contributors include: Edmund Arens, Gregory Baum, Francis Brassard, Dustin J. Byrd, Denis R. Janz, Gottfried Küenzlen, Mislav Kukoč, Michael, R. Ott, Rudolf J. Siebert, Hans K. Weitensteiner, and Brian C. Wilson.
The Impact of the Presbyterian Church in the Caribbean
In Beyond the Legacy of the Missionaries and East Indians, Jerome Teelucksingh offers a revisionist perspective of the role of the Presbyterian Church in Trinidad. He is particularly interested in social mobility as regards the Indo-Caribbean diaspora in the era following the First World War. He argues that the Presbyterian Church in the Caribbean was particularly interested in women’s rights. As such, he examines the dynamic between local expertise and Canadian missionary work in such social uplift processes.
Volume Editor: Samantha Kahn Herrick
Hagiography and the History of Latin Christendom, 500–1500 shows the historical value of texts celebrating saints—both the most abundant medieval source material and among the most difficult to use. Hagiographical sources present many challenges: they are usually anonymous, often hard to date, full of topoi, and unstable. Moreover, they are generally not what we would consider factually accurate. The volume’s twenty-one contributions draw on a range of disciplines and employ a variety of innovative methods to address these challenges and reach new discoveries about the medieval world that extend well beyond the study of sanctity. They show the rich potential of hagiography to enhance our knowledge of that world, and some of the ways to unlock it.

Contributors are Ellen Arnold, Helen Birkett, Edina Bozoky, Emma Campbell, Adrian Cornell du Houx, David Defries, Albrecht Diem, Cynthia Hahn, Samantha Kahn Herrick, J.K. Kitchen, Jamie Kreiner, Klaus Krönert, Mathew Kuefler, Katherine J. Lewis, Giovanni Paolo Maggioni, Charles Mériaux, Paul Oldfield, Sara Ritchey, Catherine Saucier, Laura Ackerman Smoller, and Ineke van ‘t Spijker.

See inside the book.