Early Psychoanalytic Religious Writings presents, in one edited volume, many of the foundational writings in the psychoanalytic study of religion. These translated works by Abraham, Fromm, Pfister, and others, complement Freud’s seminal contributions and provide a unique window into the origins of psychoanalytic thinking. The volume includes the Freud-Pfister correspondence, with a brief introduction, which reveals the rich back story of friendship, mutual respect, and intellectual debate. These essays are anchored in Freud’s early theory-building and prefigure and are linked to later developments in psychoanalytic thought. The issues raised in these essays are of relevance still today – how is religions thinking shaped by unconscious processes reflecting primary relationships and drives?
In Conjectures and Controversy in the Study of Fundamentalism, W. Paul Williamson takes a critical look at the sociohistorical emergence of fundamentalism and examines how historians constructed popular, though questionable, conceptions of the movement that have dominated decades of empirical research in psychology. He further analyzes the notions of militancy and anti-modernity as valid characterizations of fundamentalism and examines whether fundamentalism, as a Christian Protestant phenomenon, is useful in labelling global forms of religious extremism and violence. In observing the lack of theory-driven research, the publication offers theories that situate fundamentalism as a social psychological phenomenon as opposed to some personal predisposition. Students and scholars of fundamentalism will discover Conjectures and Controversy in the Study of Fundamentalism to be a provocative study on the topic.
Author: Barbara Keller
Psychoanalytic and Psychometric Perspectives on Religion suggests to combine perspectives from psychoanalysis and academic psychology, from nomothetic and idiothetic research, for more depth of vision for the current psychology of religion. In this interdisciplinary study, Barbara Keller demonstrates the potential of integrative perspectives by analysing topics such as religious development, religion and personality, and the process of working with religious issues in psychotherapy. Options for the study of lived “religion” are discussed, taking into consideration North American and European contexts of religious experience and of psychological and psychoanalytic discussion.
A Practical Review of Research and Application
In Terror Management Theory: A Practical Review of Research and Application, Robert B. Arrowood and Cathy R. Cox discuss relevant research from an experimental, existential psychology tradition. Outlining the past thirty years of research within terror management, the authors discuss such topics as religion, close relations, politics and law, existential growth, and physical and mental health.

Although the inevitable outcome of all humanity is death, according to terror management theory, we adhere to cultural worldviews and establish close relations in order to boost our self-esteem. Through these defences, we deny our death and attain a degree of immortality, staving off existential fear by being part of an enduring cultural system that will outlive any individual member.
Fears and stories about an underground religion devoted to Satan, which demands and carries out child sacrifice, appeared in the United States in the late twentieth century and became the subject of media reports supported by some mental health professionals. Examining these modern fantasies leads us back to ancient stories which in some cases believers consider the height of religious devotion.

Horrifying ideas about human sacrifice, child sacrifice, and the offering to the gods of a beloved only son by his father appear repeatedly in Western traditions, starting with the Greeks and the Hebrews. In Flesh and Blood: Interrogating Freud on Human Sacrifice, Real and Imagined, Beit-Hallahmi focuses on rituals of violence tied to religion, both imagined and real. The main focus of this work is the meaning of blood and ritual killing in the history of religion. The book examines the encounter with the idea of child sacrifice in the context of human hopes for salvation.
Multiple forms of oppression, injustice, and violence today have roots in histories of colonialism. This connection to the past feels familiar for some and less relevant for others. Understanding and responding to these connections is more crucial than ever, yet some resist rather than face this task directly. Others resist oppressive postcolonial conditions.

Using intercultural stories and pastoral care scholarship, this book charts pathways through five resistances (not me, not here, not now, not relevant, not possible) to awaken creative pastoral care in a postcolonial world. McGarrah Sharp recommends practices that everyone can do: believing in each other, revisiting how histories are taught, imagining more passable futures, heeding prophetic poets, and crossing borders with healthy boundaries.
The 30th volume of Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion consists of two special sections, as well as two separate empirical studies on attachment and daily spiritual practices. The first special section deals with the social scientific study of religion in Indonesia. Indonesia is a predominantly Muslim country whose history and contemporary involvement in the study of religion is explored from both sociological and psychological perspectives. The second special section is on the Pope Francis effect: the challenges of modernization in the Catholic church and the global impact of Pope Francis. While its focus is mainly on the Catholic religion, the internal dynamics and geopolitics explored apply more broadly.
How has man dealt in daily practice with the uncertainty intrinsic to the future? Prognostication in History is a peer-reviewed, international book series that investigates the concepts, techniques and practices and their development in different societies and in different periods. Its main focus is on Asia and Europe.
Prognostication in all its forms is an extremely diverse anthropological phenomenon, which so far has been understudied in the Humanities. The book series approaches the topic from a cross-cultural and multi-disciplinary perspective, aiming to both broaden specific knowledge and enhance critical reflection. Published in close cooperation with the Society for the Critical Study of Divination, it builds on the work of the International Consortium for Research in the Humanities at Erlangen University on “Fate, Freedom, and Prognostication – Strategies for Coping with the Future in East Asia and Europe”, thus providing a platform for scholars world-wide to present and connect their research on a subject of ever-growing importance for a wide variety of disciplines.
The general papers in Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion, Volume 29 cover a range of topics including psychological type, prayer, nature and well-being, psychobiography, coping with addiction, and the role of place in spirituality. The first special section on congregational studies draws on a range of large datasets from the National Church Life Surveys in Australia. Papers examine the factors that predict individual sense of belonging in Catholic parishes as well as congregational-level aspects of vitality, collective confidence, and innovativeness. The second special section examines the Ideological Surround Model and how it can help to better understand expressions of faith related to psychological constructs such as mindfulness, fundamentalism, and the ‘Dark Triad’ of Machiavellianism, Narcissism, and Psychopathy.
Conspiracy theories are a ubiquitous feature of our times. The Handbook of Conspiracy Theories and Contemporary Religion is the first reference work to offer a comprehensive, transnational overview of this phenomenon along with in-depth discussions of how conspiracy theories relate to religion(s). Bringing together experts from a wide range of disciplines, from psychology and philosophy to political science and the history of religions, the book sets the standard for the interdisciplinary study of religion and conspiracy theories.