Violence, Conspiracies, and New Religions
Stimulated by the vast scholarly output of James Lewis, experts opine on violence, conspiracies, and new religious movements. On violence, Mark Juergensmeyer explains his “epistemic worldview analysis” in interviewing religious terrorists; Michael Barkun transnational conspiracy theories such as the Sovereign Citizens Movement and QAnon; David Bromley the “lost cause movement” which built up confederate identity for Southerners long after the Civil War; Mattias Gardell the link between bibliocaust and holocaust from 1499 Granada through the National Socialists of WWII to the Qur’an burnings of Rasmus Paladan in contemporary Sweden. On new religious movements, Rebecca Moore critiques the reputed pathology of the leader in “suicide cults,” the problem with “monolithic inferences” in examining members’ willingness to die, and the elusiveness of comparative new religions to rigid stereotyping; Catherine Wessinger the extraordinary charisma of David Koresh of the Branch Davidians at Waco, 76 of whom died in the 1993 conflagration with U.S. agents. On media and the law, Carole Cusack traces arguments about religious dress codes in liberal versus illiberal societies; Stefano Bigliardi the misleading portrayal of religious sects in films; Zang Xinzhang the Chinese concept of Xie Jiao in application to Falun Gong. Margo Kitts summarizes the stellar contributions in the introduction.
Published: Oct 1, 2024