Conversion to Christianity : historical and anthropological perspectives on a great transformation /
edited and with an introduction by Robert W. Hefner.
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1993.
x, 326 p. ; 24 cm.
0520078357 (cloth : alk. paper) 0520078365 (pbk. : alk. paper)
More Details
Berkeley : University of California Press, c1993.
0520078357 (cloth : alk. paper) 0520078365 (pbk. : alk. paper)
contents note
World building and the rationality of conversion / Robert W. Hefner -- From the Jesus movement toward institutional church / Howard Clark Kee -- The local and the global in southern African religious history / Terence Ranger -- Of faith and commitment, Christian conversion in Muslim Java / Robert W. Hefner -- Conversion and colonialism in northern Mexico / William L. Merrill -- Conversion and community in Amazonia / Donald K. Pollock -- We are Ekelesia [sic] / John Barker -- Religion, morality, and prophetic traditions / Aram A. Yengoyan -- Why the Thai are not Christians / Charles F. Keyes -- The glyphomancy factor / David K. Jordan -- Boundaries and horizons / Peter Wood.
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Robert W. Hefner is Associate Professor of Anthropology and Associate Director of the Institute for the Study of Economic Culture at Boston University
Flap Copy
"Contributes as much to advancing contemporary social theory as it does to understanding conversion."--Dale Eickelman, Dartmouth College "These rich and rewarding essays problematize a process central to Western notions of the making of modernity--the reformation of peripheral worlds under the impact of global religions. [The authors] challenge established disciplinary boundaries, providing sensitive accounts of the interplay of world-transforming movements and accounts of specific cultures and histories. In doing so, they cause us to rethink the ethnocentric, developmentalist assumptions often built into the very notion of "conversion" itself as a concept in our own scholarly tradition."--Jean Comaroff, University of Chicago
Long Description
One of the most striking developments in the history of modern civilizations has been the conversion of tribal peoples to more expansively organized "world" religions. There is little scholarly consensus as to why these religions have endured and why conversion to them has been so widespread. These essays explore the phenomenon of Christian conversion from this world-building perspective. Combining rich case studies with original theoretical insights, this work challenges sociologists, anthropologists and historians of religion to reassess the varieties of religious experience and the convergent processes involved in religious change.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. vii
Notes on Contributorsp. ix
World Building and the Rationality of Conversionp. 3
Community Recast: The form and Meanings of Christian Conversion
From the Jesus Movement toward Institutional Churchp. 47
The Local and the Global in Southern African Religious Historyp. 65
Of Faith and Commitment: Christian Conversion in Muslim Javap. 99
The Political Economy of Religious Identity
Conversion and Colonialism in Northern Mexico: The Tarahumara Response to the Jesuit Mission Program, 1601-1767p. 129
Conversion and "Community" in Amazoniap. 165
"We Are Ekelesia": Conversion in Uiaku, Papua New Guineap. 199
Modalities of Religious Exchange
Religion, Morality, and Prophetic Traditions: Conversion among the Pitjantjatjara of Central Australiap. 233
Why the Thai Are Not Christians: Buddhist and Christian Conversion in Thailandp. 259
The Glyphomancy Factor: Observations on Chinese Conversionp. 285
Afterword: Boundaries and Horizonsp. 305
Indexp. 323
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