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Edited by Ralph L. Piedmont and Andrew Village

The 25th volume of Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion continues to provide readers with an interdisciplinary assortment of high quality research studies aimed at capturing salient, contemporary trends in the field. The current volume presents a special section examining the role of spiritual and religious themes in sexuality research. Engaging analyses evaluate homonegativity and how religious advocacy influences perceptions of gay and lesbian individuals across different cultures. Also included are papers on the development of sexual identities among religious committed individuals. These papers help to connect concepts too frequently considered unrelated. The regular articles provide similarly stimulating evaluations of timely topics such as religious coping, gratitude, and the role of personality in describing religious experiences.

A New Model of Religious Conversion

Beyond Network Theory and Social Constructivism

Series:

Ines W. Jindra

Based on the analysis of 52 conversion narratives to various religious groups, A New Model of Religious Conversion utilizes case studies for comparison of converts' backgrounds, network influence, and conversion narratives. The author convincingly illustrates a "fit" between the converts' background and the religion they convert to, such as between disorganized family backgrounds and highly structured religions. Conversely, those from highly structured backgrounds often convert to more "open" groups. The book also makes it clear that not all conversions are influenced by networks or align themselves with a social constructivist view of a conversion as an "account." Taking converts' trajectories seriously, the author makes a strong case for the application of biographical sociology to the study of conversion and (American) sociology overall.

Series:

Ines W. Jindra