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Reflexive Religion: The New Age in Brazil and Beyond examines the rise of alternative spiritualities in contemporary Brazil. Masterfully combining late modern theory with multi-site ethnographies of the New Age, it explains how traditional religion is being transformed by processes of reflexivity, globalization and individualism. The book unveils how the New Age has entered Brazil, was adapted to local Catholic, Spiritist and psychology cultures, and more recently how the Brazilian Nova Era re-enters transnational circuits of spiritual practice. It closely examines Paulo Coelho (spiritualist novels), Projectiology (astral projection) and Santo Daime (neo-shamanism) to understand the broader “new agerization” of Christianity and Spiritualism. Reflexive Religion offers a compelling account of how the religious field is being updated under late modern conditions.
International Perspectives
Youth, Religion, and Identity in a Globalizing Context: International Perspectives investigates the ways that young people navigate the intersections of religion and identity. As part of the Youth in a Globalizing World series, this book provides a broad discussion on the various social, cultural, and political forces affecting youth and their identities from an international comparative perspective. Contributors to this volume situate the experiences of young people in Canada, the United States, Germany, and Australia within a globalized context. This volume explores the different experiences of youth, the impact of community and processes of recognition, and the reality of ambivalence as agency.
Volume 9: The Changing Faces of Catholicism (2018)
Catholicism is generally over-institutionalized and over-centralized in comparison to other religions. However, it finds itself in an increasingly interrelated and globalized world and is therefore immersed in a great plurality of social realities. The Changing Faces of Catholicism assembles an international cast of contributors to explore the consequent decline of powerful Catholic organisations as well as to address the responses and resistance efforts that specific countries have taken to counteract the secularization crisis in both Europe and the Americas. It reveals some of the strategies of the Catholic Church as a whole, and of the Vatican centre in particular, to address problems of the global era through the dissemination of spiritually progressive writing, World Youth Days, and the transformation of Catholic education to become a forum for intercultural and interreligious dialogue. The volume also reflects on the adaptation of Catholic institutions and missions as sponsored by religious communities and monastic orders.
In Argentina, Pentecostalism had a breakthrough in the early 1980s, and today more than 10 per cent of the population are Pentecostals. The revival coincided with a socio-political transformation of Argentinean society. After half a century of dictatorships and Perónism, democracy was restored, and structural changes paved the way for an autonomisation of the political, economic, scientific and religious spheres. The “new” form of society that developed resembles what in this study is called a Western model, which to a large degree has been, and still is, spread on a global scale. In this book, Aasmundsen examines the religious sphere and how Pentecostals relate to society at large, and the political and judicial spheres in particular.