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Edited by Gerhard Robbers and W. Cole Durham

In recent years, issues of freedom of religion or belief and state-religion relations have become increasingly important worldwide. While some works have treated such issues regionally, the Encyclopedia of Law and Religion is unique in its breadth, covering all independent nations and jurisdictions as well as the major international organizations, treating the relation between law and religion in its various aspects, including those related to the role of religion in society, the relations between religion and state institutions, freedom of religion, legal aspects of religious traditions, the interaction between law and religion, and other issues at the junction of law, religion, and state.

Offered online and as a five-volume print set – Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe, Oceania, Special Territories, International Organizations and Index – this work is a valuable resource for religious and legal scholars alike. Each article provides the following information for the broadest comparative advantage:

• Social facts;
• Historical background;
• Position of religion in the legal system;
• Individual religious freedom;
• Legal status of religious communities;
• Right of autonomy;
• Active religious communities and cultures;
• Labour law within religious communities;
• Religious assistance in public institutions;
• Legal position of religious personnel and members of religious orders;
• Matrimonial and familial laws;
• Religious and criminal laws; and
• Country-specific issues.

Visit the online edition here.

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Edited by Andrew Village and Ralph Hood

This volume includes a wide range of papers that explore individual and institutional aspects of religion from a social-science perspective. The special section has articles from research groups in Europe, the USA and Australia on clergy work-related psychological health, stress, burnout and coping strategies. The general papers include studies on coping strategies among Buddhists, gender differences in response to church decline, teenage participation in religion, social capital among Friends of Cathedrals, psychological profiles of clergy, education effects on Roman Catholic deacons, and an analysis of prayer requests. Together these papers form a valuable collection indicating the depth and vibrancy of research in these fields.

Sociologies of Religion 

National Traditions 

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Edited by Anthony Blasi and Giuseppe Giordan

Sociologies of Religion: National Traditions presents fourteen histories of the sociological study of religion in a diverse set of nations. Each of the histories is newly written by author who are uniquely situated to tell narrate the story of the field in their countries. They give us the stories behind major personages, theoretical traditions, seminal works, research institutes, and professional associations. The histories trace the various ways the field was established in different academic and religious contexts and the trajectories it took in emerging as a scientific specialty.

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Edited by Trevor Stack, Naomi Goldenberg and Timothy Fitzgerald

Religious-secular distinctions have been crucial to the way in which modern governments have rationalised their governance and marked out their sovereignty – as crucial as the territorial boundaries that they have drawn around nations. The authors of this volume provide a multi-dimensional picture of how the category of religion has served the ends of modern government. They draw on perspectives from history, anthropology, moral philosophy, theology and religious studies, as well as empirical analysis of India, Japan, Mexico, the United States, Israel-Palestine, France and the United Kingdom.

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Edited by Gina Gertrud Smith and Stanislaw Grodz

Religion, Ethnicity and Transnational Migration between West Africa and Europe focuses on the West African migrants’ presence in Europe and the way they negotiate religion and ethnicity in a new context. Special attention is given to the diversity of religious background of the migrants and to exploration of interreligious (especially Christian-Muslim) relations. These dimensions of transnational migration have not been widely researched, yet.
After introducing the new African religious diaspora, the situation of the Senegalese, Ghanaian and Fulbe migrants – both Christian and Muslim – in France, Spain, the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland is analysed. The impact the migrants make on their communities of origin in Africa is also taken into account.

Contributors are: Afe Adogame, Martha Frederiks, Stanisław Grodź, Tilmann Heil, Monika Salzbrunn, José C.M. van Santen, Miriam Schader, Etienne Smith and Gina Gertrud Smith.

Globalized Religion and Sexual Identity

Contexts, Contestations, Voices

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Edited by Heather Shipley

Globalized Religion and Sexual Identity reflects on the ways religion, gender and sexual identity are framed and regulated in multiple spheres across the globe. Controversies in the public arena regarding religion and sexual identity often construct these categories as inherently oppositional or already in conflict. As state policies regarding sexuality and sexual diversity develop, promoting inclusivity and non-discrimination, it is imperative to develop a more nuanced discussion regarding the relationship of religion/ideology to sexual diversity and sexuality. The goal of this volume is to explore religion and sexual identity from a range of countries across the globe, focusing on the theme of religious/ideological voices in state policies, such as same-sex marriage, identification, and education.

Jesus Incognito

The Hidden Christ in Western Art since 1960

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Martien E. Brinkman

In this book Martien Brinkman explores the Jesus incognito as found in Western film, literature, and the visual arts since 1960. His interest here is focused primarily on indirect references to the Jesus figure. To his surprise, he found an abundance of allusions to Jesus in key figures in modern art. This confirmed his view that film, literature, and the visual arts make a substantial contribution, even in secular Western culture, to continuing reflection on Jesus’ significance.
Brinkman finds important characteristics of a hidden Christ in films by Gabriel Axel, Ingmar Bergman, Krzysztof Kieslowski, and Lars von Trier, novels by Peter De Vries, J.M. Coetzee, and Arnon Grunberg, poems by Les Murray and Czeslaw Milosz, and paintings by Andy Warhol, Harald Duwe, and Frans Franciscus. He defines a hidden Christ as a fictional human individual who can be seen as a new embodiment of the meaning that can be attributed in the present to the biblical figure of Jesus. The hidden Christ is therefore a contemporized Jesus figure.
This book will be of interest for everyone who shares Brinkman’s quest for this Jesus incognito.

Reaching for the Sky

Religious Education from Christian and Islamic Perspectives

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Edited by Stella El Bouayadi-van de Wetering and Siebren Miedema

Young people have to make their own way in the world; they have to give meaning to and find meaning in their lives. This is the field of religious education, which is provided by parents, religious leaders, or teachers of religion and worldviews. One of the most important challenges is to educate children in their own religion, emphasizing that religion’s tolerant and peaceful side and to teach children about the beliefs of other traditions. An even more important challenge is to teach them to live together in peace and justice. This volume deals with religious education in Christianity and Islam in specific countries. Scholars in religious education need to know more about the ways in which Muslims and Christians perceive and practice their respective forms of religious education and explore methods that help young people develop their religious identity in accordance with their tradition—and also meet with comrades from other traditions, as the two young Gambian and Dutch women shown on the cover do.
This volume explores the field of Christian and Islamic education. Muslim and Christian scholars from Egypt, Lebanon, Turkey, Indonesia, Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands describe various aspects of religious education at school, at home, in the mosque and church, via the media and in peer groups. The papers were presented and discussed at an authors’ conference at VU University Amsterdam, organized in close collaboration between the staff of its Centre of Islamic Theology and other scholars in religious education, and the Islamic Universities League in Cairo. The authors describe actual processes of education, reflect on religious identity formation and respect for other people and the influences from home, school, mosque, and church, the media and “the street.”

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Edited by Norbert Hintersteiner

Thinking the Divine in Interreligious Encounter seeks to take seriously our questions of cross-cultural and inter-religious dialogue on God or the Divine: How can the Divine be named and thought as Europe finds itself in midst of cross-cultural processes of a global nature and as religions such as Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism come into the foreground in the West? What are some of the major shifts in Christian theology, as it recognizes that peoples of non-Christian faith traditions name and think the Divine in ways that differ from and sometimes conflict with Europe’s dominant religion(s) and secular culture? Together with “Naming and Thinking God in Europe Today” and “Post-colonial Europe in the Crucible of Cultures” (Rodopi 2007), this volume allows us to discover opportunities for a multivalenced reflection on God or the Divine that achieves mutual intelligibility without surrendering to a dogmatic untranslatability or a crude relativism.

Between Play and Prayer

The Variety of Theatricals in Spiritual Performance

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Anita Hammer

Between Play and Prayer launches Spiritual Performance as a term to cover all human performance which in some way refers to creating the presence of beings or entities from a realm that transgresses the sensorial. This notion covers a great variety of performative genres, ranging from funerary services, spiritualist performances of deceased souls, to spiritual readings. This broad and deep approach to a range of performances is answering a renewed craving for spirituality in contemporary culture. By way of performance theory and aesthetic theory, concepts of faith, belief, experience, play, prayer and theatricality, are set in motion when proposing the necessity of experiencing such performances on their own terms. In depth descriptions of a variety of performances in Norwegian and New Zealand local contexts show the necessity of experiencing and understanding an existential quality in Spiritual Performance. Faith, not credo, is at the heart of spiritual practice. The book represents a new, innovative and trans-disciplinary approach to spirituality in performance. The reading of this book is a must for scholars in the field of theatre- and performance studies, ritual and festival studies, for scholars of religion, and anyone interested in the understanding of spiritual practices.