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Anthropology and religion : what we know, think, and question

Author: Robert L Winzeler
Publisher: Lanham : AltaMira Press, ©2008.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
"Drawing from ethnographic examples found throughout the world, this book offers a general introduction to what anthropologists know or think about religion, how they have studied it, and how they have interpreted of explained it since the late nineteenth century. Winzeler's balanced consideration of classic topics, basic concepts, and new developments in the anthropological study of religion moves beyond cultural  Read more...
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Material Type: Internet resource
Document Type: Book, Internet Resource
All Authors / Contributors: Robert L Winzeler
ISBN: 9780759110458 075911045X 9780759110465 0759110468
OCLC Number: 144770251
Description: xv, 297 pages : illustrations ; 23 cm
Contents: Anthropology and religion. Words and things ; Is religion a human universal? ; The meaning of religion ; Tylor's definition ; Do all peoples distinguish between "natural" and "supernatural"? ; The Durkheimian approach ; The anthropology of religion ; Types of anthropological studies of religion ; Types of religion ; Prehistoric religion ; Ancient religions ; Indigenous religions of small-scale societies ; The world religions ; Religions versus religion Religion here and there. Religion is primarily a matter of belief or faith ; Religion and identity : one at a time ; Religion is a separate realm of life ; Religion is associated with a special building ; Religion concerns transcendental rather than practical matters ; Practical religion among Latin American immigrants in Los Angeles ; Religion is the basis of morality --
Religion, evolution, and prehistory. The bio-evolution of religion ; When did religion develop? ; Neanderthal burials, ritual cannibalism, and cave bear cults ; Religion in the Upper Paleolithic in Southwestern Europe ; The origin of religion : how it began ; Psychological and sociological theories ; Altered-states-of-consciousness explanations ; Ritual as the origin of religion ; The nature of early religion ; Has religion evolved? ; The evolution of belief ; Religion and society. Religion, adaptation, and the environment. Ecological functionalism : Naskapi hunting divination ; Religion as a regulator of ecological processes ; Ritual as a thermostat ; Balinese temples as regulators of irrigation systems ; Cultural materialist explanations of seemingly maladaptive ritual practices (or, solving the riddles of culture) ; Ceremonies can help populations adapt to available resources : the potlatch ; Pig hate and pig love ; The pig and the spread of Islam into Southeast Asia ; Religion and environmentalism ; Religion promotes sound environmental practices ; Religious beliefs and practices that do not support good environmental practices ; Religion and the ecological Indian ; Religion and the decline and collapse of societies ; The problem of reaching conclusions about religion and adaptation --
Natural symbols. What are natural symbols? ; Animals ; Why animals are important as symbols ; Snakes ; Birds ; Colors ; Lateral symbolism : left- and right-handedness ; Percussion sounds ; The head and its parts ; Hair ; The skull, head-hunting, and scalping ; The eye ; Natural symbols and natural religion. Myth and ritual, old and new. What more exactly is myth? ; Theories, approaches, and explanations of myth ; William Robertson Smith and myth-ritualism ; Lévi-Strauss and the structural study of myth ; The protagonists of myth ; The hero ; The trickster ; Trickster animals in Japan ; Myth and gender ; Contemporary urban myth ; Rumor myths ; Government head-hunting and construction sacrifice --
Ritual and belief. The nature of ritual ; Religious ritual ; Positive and negative dimensions of ritual ; Some common features of religious ritual activity ; Elementary ritual actions ; More complex ritual activity ; Some common types of ritual ; Ritual and time ; The structure of ritual according to Arnold van Gennep ; Journeys and boundaries ; Pilgrimage ; Rites of passage ; Pregnancy and childbirth ; Coming-of-age and marriage ; Mortuary ritual ; Notions of the soul and the afterlife ; Bad death ; Funerals as rites of passages ; Two-stage mortuary practices ; Two-stage mortuary practices in the central highlands of Vietnam. Witchcraft and sorcery : past and present, far and near. Traditional witchcraft ant sorcery in small-scale societies ; Bird flu and witchcraft in contemporary Cambodia ; The Azande and other African groups ; The Navajo ; Witchcraft in Melanesia and Southeast Asia ; Witchcraft in late medieval and early modern Europe ; Organized witchcraft did not exist ; Witchcraft was actually class struggle ; Witchcraft was pre-Christian religion ; Witchcraft beliefs, experiences, and hallucination ; Modern witchcraft or neo-Paganism ; Modern English witchcraft ; Modern American witchcraft --
Spirit possession, spirit mediumship, and shamanism. Spirit possession and spirit mediumship ; Spirit mediumship or voluntary possession ; Involuntary spirit possession as psychopathology and spirit mediumship as psychotherapy ; Involuntary spirit possession as protest and empowerment ; Spirit possession among Malay schoolgirls and factory workers in Malaysia ; Shamanism ; The work and influence of Mircea Eliade ; Defining shamanism broadly or narrowly ; The basic features of shamanism ; The occurrence of shamanism ; Shamanism, modes of adaptation, and levels of social, political, and religious organization and gender ; Shamanism as a Paleolithic religion ; Shamania : the controversy over prehistoric art and shamanism ; Neo-Shamanism : Carlos Castaneda and Michael Harner ; Carlos Castaneda and Don Juan ; Michael Harner and the foundation for shamanic studies. Religious movements and the origins of religion. Three Native American movements ; The Delaware prophet ; James Mooney and the Ghost Dance ; Peyotism and the Native American church ; Cargo movements in Melanesia ; The Tuka movement in Fiji ; The notion of cargo ; The logic of cargo movements ; Later cargo cults and nationalist movements ; The Bungan movement in the interior of Borneo ; Revitalization ; A reevaluation of the theory of revitalization --
Anthropology and religion in a global context : the world religions, conversion, and complexity. The world religions from an anthropological perspective ; Named identity ; Sacred texts, written languages, and restricted literacy ; Universality and localization ; Colonialism, diaspora and the world religions ; Evangelism ; Suffering and salvation ; The anthropological study of the world religions ; Theoretical developments ; Religion, society, and civilization in rural Java ; Buddhism and the spirit cults among the Burmese ; Gender and religion in Korea ; The conversion of indigenous peoples to and within the world religions ; The conversion of indigenous peoples in Southeast Asia ; Conversion to Christianity in Northern Thailand ; The conversion from Roman Catholicism to Evangelistic Protestantism in Mexico and Central America.
Responsibility: Robert L. Winzeler.
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Abstract:

Drawing from ethnographic examples found throughout the world, this text covers what anthropologists know or think about religion, how they have studied it, and how they interpret or explain it. A  Read more...

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