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Book Cover
E-book
Author Urban, Hugh B., author

Title New age, neopagan, and new religious movements : alternative spirituality in contemporary America / Hugh B. Urban
Published Oakland, California : University of California Press, [2015]
©2015
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource : illustrations
Contents Introduction : the rise of new religions in modern America -- The Native American Church : ancient tradition in a modern legal context -- Mormonism : polygamy, marriage, and the law -- Spiritualism : women, mediums, and messages from other worlds -- The Nation of Islam and the five percenters : race, religion, and hip hop -- Rastafari : messianism, music, and ganja -- The Church of Scientology : new religions and tax exemption -- Wicca and Neopaganism : feminism and environmentalism -- Modern Satanism : religious parody and Satanic panic -- ISKCON (Hare Krishna) : Eastern religions in modern America -- Channeling and the new age : alternative spirituality in popular culture and media -- Peoples Temple : mass suicide, media, and the "cult" label -- The Branch Davidians : millenarian movements and religious freedom -- The Raëlians: UFOs and human cloning -- Appendix : method and theory in the study of new religions
Summary "New Age, Neopagan, and New Religious Movements is a comprehensive and user-friendly book devoted to the study of alternative spiritual currents in modern America. The book covers a wide range of new religions from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, including the Native American Church, Mormonism, Spiritualism, Scientology, the Nation of Islam, Rastafari, ISKCON, Wicca, the Church of Satan, Peoples Temple, Branch Davidians, and the Raëlians. Each chapter focuses on one key issue or debate that raises larger issues in the study of religion and American culture more broadly, such as the legality of peyote in the Native American Church, the role of women and feminism in Wicca, the role of hip hop and reggae music in the spread of the Nation of Islam and Rastafari, and the debate over human cloning in the Raëlian movement. The book also addresses key theoretical and methodological problems in the study of new religions: Why has there been such a tremendous proliferation of new spiritual forms in the past 150 years, even amid our increasingly rational, scientific, technological, and 'secular' society? Why has the United States become the heartland for the explosion of new religious movements? How do we deal with complex legal debates such as the use of peyote by the Native American Church, the use of marijuana by Rastafarians, or the practice of plural marriage by some Mormon communities? And how do we navigate issues of religious freedom and privacy in a new age of religious violence, terrorism, and government surveillance?"--Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Cults -- United States.
Occultism -- United States.
Sects -- United States.
Form Electronic book
ISBN 0520962125 (electronic bk.)
9780520962125 (electronic bk.)