The Oxford Handbook of Religious Conversion

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2014-03-31
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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The Oxford Handbook of Religious Conversion offers a comprehensive exploration of the dynamics of religious conversion, which for centuries has profoundly shaped societies, cultures, and individuals throughout the world. Scholars from a wide array of religions and disciplines interpret both the varieties of conversion experiences and the processes that inform this personal and communal phenomenon.

This volume examines the experiences of individuals and communities who change religions, those who experience an intensification of their religion of origin, and those who encounter new religions through colonial intrusion, missionary work, and charismatic and revitalization movements. The thirty-two innovative essays provide overviews of the history of particular religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Sikhism, Islam, Christianity, Judaism, indigenous religions, and new religious movements. The essays also offer a wide range of disciplinary perspectives-psychological, sociological, anthropological, legal, political, feminist, and geographical-on methods and theories deployed in understanding conversion, and insight into various forms of deconversion.

Author Biography

Lewis R. Rambo is Professor of World Religions and Christian Mission at the San Francisco Theological Seminary and the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley.

Charles Farhadian is Professor of World Religions and Christian Mission at Westmont College.

Table of Contents

Introduction - Lewis R. Rambo and Charles E. Farhadian

Disciplinary Perspectives
1. History of Religious Conversion - Marc David Baer
2. Demographics of Religious Conversion - Todd M. Johnson
3. Geography of Religious Conversion - Lily Kong and Seeta Nair
4. Anthropology of Conversion - Henri Gooren
5. The Role of Language in Religious Conversion - Peter Stromberg
6. Sociology of Conversion - Fenggang Yang and Andrew Abel
7. Conversion and the Historic Spread of Religions - Robert Montgomery
8. Migration and Conversion of Korean American Christians - Rebecca Kim
9. Psychology of Religious Conversion - Ray Paloutzian
10. Religious Conversion and Cognitive Neuroscience - Kelly Bulkeley
11. Dreaming and Religious Conversion - Kelly Bulkeley
12. Deconversion - Heinz Streib
13. Feminist Approaches to the Study of Conversion- Eliza Kent
14. Religious Conversion and the Arts - Diane Apostolos-Cappadona
15. Religious Conversion as Narrative and Autobiography - Bruce Hindmarsh
16. Religious Conversion and Semiotic Analysis - Massimo Leone
17. Politics and Religious Conversion - Timothy J. Steigenga

18. Hinduism and Conversion - Arvind Sharma
19. Conversion to Jainism - Andrea Jain
20. Conversion to Buddhism - Dan Smyer YŁ
21. Conversion to Sikhism - Gurinder Singh Mann
22. Conversion to Daoism - Louis Komjathy
23. Conversion to Confucianism - Anna Sun
24. Conversion and Indigenous Religions in China - Fan Lizhu and Chen Na
25. Conversion to Judaism - Alan Segal
26. Conversion to Christianity - David Kling
27. Conversion to Islam in Theological and Historical Perspectives - Marcia Hermansen
28. Conversion to Islam and the Construction of a Pious Self - Karin van Nieuwkerk
29. Conversion to New Religious Movements - Douglas Cowan
30. Deconversion from New Religious Movements - Stuart A. Wright
31. Legal and Political Issues and Religious Conversion - James Richardson
32. Conversion to Mormonism - Seth L. Bryant, Henri Gooren, Rick Phillips, & David G. Stewart, Jr.


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