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 32 innovative essays provide overviews of the history of particular religions, disciplinary perspectives on a range of methods and theories deployed in understanding conversion, and insight into various forms of deconversion.
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.
Contributors ; 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 ; Religions ; 18. Hinduism and Conversion - Arvind Sharma ; 19. Conversion to Jainism - Andrea Jain ; 20. Conversion to Buddhism - Dan Smyer Yu ; 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. ; Index