This book brings together studies by seventeen specialists in the science of religions in which they relate the changes in their discipline to the changes which have occurred in a select number of modern(ising) societies worldwide. It attempts to study these developments in their relation to and as conditioned and constrained by cultural change, changes in educational systems, technology, population (for example migration), economic patterns, politics, and, last but not least, religious systems. The essays focus on resp. France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, the USA, Turkey, Israel, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Indonesia, Japan, and China. Written in honour of Dr. Lammert Leertouwer, professor of History of Religions and the Comparative Study of Religions at Leiden University from 1979 until his retirement in 1997, the book is particularly important for all those who are interested in the religious, social and political contexts of the academic Study of Religions in general and in the various countries dealt with in particular.
Gerard A.Wiegers, Ph.D. Leiden University (1991) is Senior Lecturer for the Comparative Study of Religions at Leiden University. Most recent monograph:
Entre el Islam y Occidente. Vida de Samuel Pallache [Between Islam and The West: The Life of Samuel Pallache] (Madrid: Siglo XXI, 1999) (with Mercedes García-Arenal).
Jan Platvoet, Ph.D. (1982), Utrecht University, has been Lecturer in the Science of Religions at the KTU, a Roman Catholic instistute for academic theology at Utrecht from 1969 to 1991, and Senior Lecturer for the Comparative Study of Religions at Leiden University from 1991 to 2000. Recent publication:
The Pragmatics of Defining Religion: Contexts, Concepts & Contests. (Brill, 1999, with A.L. Molendijk).