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Aspects in Contexts

Studies in the History of Psychology of Religion

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Edited by Jacob A. Belzen

Psychology of religion has been enjoying considerable attention of late; the number of publications and people involved in the field is rapidly increasing. It is, however, one of the oldest branches within psychology in general, and one of the few in which an interdisciplinary approach has been kept alive and fostered. The fate of the field has been quite varied in the countries where psychology of religion has been initiated and developed during the 20th century. In this volume, some aspects of this international history are examined. Coming from six different Western countries, each of the contributors has a record in the historiography of psychology and profound knowledge of psychology of religion. Their approaches combine elements from the history of mentalities, the social history of science and biographical studies.
The volume contains in-depth treatments of such topics as the growth of the field as reflected in university politics, developments within international organizations, and the personal involvement of contributors to the field. A wealth of information is provided on the background of the work of well known psychologists of religion like James Henry Leuba, Oskar Pfister, Gordon Allport, Werner Gruehn, Antoine Vergote and others.

Current Issues in the Psychology of Religion

Proceedings of the third symposium on the psychology of religion in Europe

Edited by Jacob A. Belzen and J.M. van der Lans

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Stephen W. Krauss and Ralph W. Hood

Dimensions of Mystical Experiences

Empirical Studies and Psychological Links

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Ralph W. Hood Jr.

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Stephen W. Krauss and Ralph W. Hood

Das Heilige im Profanen

Eine qualitative Studie zu religiösen Orientierungen von Frauen aus der charismatisch-evangelikalen Bewegung

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Ulrike Popp-Baier

In diesem Band wird die religiöse Kultur einer charismatischen Frauengruppe psychologisch analysiert. Partizipierende Beobachtungen, Dokumentenanalysen und narrative Interviews bilden den methodischen Zugang zu den religiösen Deutungen des Alltags und der eigenen Lebensgeschichte. Die Analysen zeigen, daß die Bekehrung zur charismatisch-evangelikalen Variante des christlichen Fundamentalismus die Konstruktion eines Erfahrungs- und Erwartungsraums erlaubt, welcher sich durch einen Zuwachs an individuellen Gestaltungsmöglichkeiten auszeichnet. Alltagspraktisch bieten sich dadurch u.a. Möglichkeiten der Rationalisierung von Entscheidungen und der Bewältigung von Kontingenzen. Lebenspraktisch können durch die religiöse Strukturierung von Erfahrungen deren personale, soziale und leibliche Dimensionen wieder akzentuiert und zu einer stringenten Lebensform verbunden werden. Dazu gehören auch ritualisierte Formen narrativer Selbstthematisierung, welche die Konstruktion einer kohärenten Biographie erlauben. Eine feministisch-kritische Interpretation derartiger Lebensgeschichten zeigt, daß manche dieser Erzählungen auch als Emanzipationsgeschichten gelesen werden können.
Gegenstandstheoretische Überlegungen zum Religionsbegriff und der methodische Entwurf einer kulturpsychologischen Religionsforschung bilden den metatheoretischen Kontext dieser empirischen Studie. Dabei wird das Konzept einer Religionspsychologie als hermeneutischer Kulturanalyse theoretisch ausgearbeitet und zugleich empirisch erprobt.

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Edited by Jacob A. Belzen

Contemporary psychology is reviving with new vigor an interest in hermeneutics, or the human science of interpretation. After a period in which positivistic and statistical approaches have been dominant, new methods are being explored. Most of these focus on narrative, cultural analysis, embodiment and interdisciplinarity. Because of its specific object of study, psychology of religion has never been without an hermeneutical emphasis. In this field of psychology scholarship, these new directions are especially welcomed as they offer perspectives for research which attempts to interpret religion as a human phenomenon.
This volume presents hermeneutical psychological studies on religion which rely on both classical and contemporary approaches. Dealing with topics like mysticism, religious symbols, life stories and mental health, contributions to the volume draw on a variety of perspectives. These range from psychoanalysis, narrative psychology and feminism to perspectives drawn deep from the wellspring of interdisciplinary collaboration with anthropology and history.