Kupari, “Lifelong minority religion: routines and reflexivity: A Bourdieuan perspective on the habitus of elderly Finnish Orthodox Christian women”

Kupari, Helena. 2015.Lifelong minority religion: routines and reflexivity: A Bourdieuan perspective on the habitus of elderly Finnish Orthodox Christian women. Religion DOI:10.1080/0048721X.2015.1104397

Abstract: Applications of the concept of habitus to research on religion have increased in recent decades. At present, Pierre Bourdieu’s interpretation of the concept is perhaps the most well known. Nevertheless, it has also met with criticism. This article utilizes Bourdieuan theorizations to discuss the habitus of elderly Finnish Orthodox Christian women. The author examines the women’s dispositions in relation to their changing minority position within Finnish society, and identifies the dynamic between reflexivity and routine practice as being central to their religion. The analysis demonstrates the value of Bourdieu’s understanding of habitus when studying the long-term effects of social power on subjectivity – as reflected, for instance, in lifelong minority religion. The author argues, moreover, that contrary to the claims of many critics, Bourdieu’s approach is suitable for inquiries into the conscious dimensions of practicing, in so far as these are conceived of as grounded in individuals’ past and present conditions of religious practice.

di Giovine and Picard (eds), “The Seductions of Pilgrimage”

Di Giovine, Michael A. and David Picard, eds. 2015. The Seductions of Pilgrimage: Sacred Journeys Afar and Astray in the Western Religious Tradition. Farnham, Surrey: Ashgate.

Publisher’s Description: The Seductions of Pilgrimage explores the simultaneously attractive and repellent, beguiling and alluring forms of seduction in pilgrimage. It focuses on the varied discursive, imaginative, and practical mechanisms of seduction that draw individual pilgrims to a pilgrimage site; the objects, places, and paradigms that pilgrims leave behind as they embark on their hyper-meaningful travel experience; and the often unforeseen elements that lead pilgrims off their desired course. Presenting the first comprehensive study of the role of seduction on individual pilgrims in the study of pilgrimage and tourism, it will appeal to scholars of anthropology, cultural geography, tourism, heritage, and religious studies.

Contents:

Foreword, Jas’ Elsner

Introduction: pilgrimage and seduction in the Abrahamic tradition, Michael A. Di Giovine and David Picard

Purity as danger? Seduction and sexuality at Walsingham, Simon Coleman

The seductions of guiding: Jewish-Israeli tour guides on the Christian Holy Land pilgrimage, Jackie Feldman

As if the road there is covered with honey’: inquiries into the seductiveness of a Greek orthodox monastery in Arizona for Russian orthodox parish pilgrims, Julia Klimova

The seductiveness of saints: interreligious pilgrimage sites in Hatay and the ritual transformations of agency, Jens Kreinath

The seduction of the past in new age pilgrimage, Jill Dubisch

Seduction in the ‘Gypsy pilgrimage’ at Les-Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer, Ellen Badone

Seductions of suffering: stigmata, salvation and pilgrimage to the sanctuary of St. Padre Pio in San Giovanni Rotondo, Michael A. Di Giovine

The seductions of the way: the return of the pilgrim and the road to Compostela as a liminal space, Eduardo Chemin

Up In God’s great cathedral’: evangelism, astronauts, and the seductiveness of outer space, Deana L. Weibel

Farhadian, “Introducing World Christianity”

Farhadian, Charles E.  (2012) Introducing World Christianity. Madden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Publisher’s Description: This interdisciplinary introduction offers students a truly global overview of the worldwide spread and impact of Christianity. It is enriched throughout by detailed historic and ethnographic material, showing how broad themes within Christianity have been adopted and adapted by Christian denominations within each major region of the world.

  • Provides a comprehensive overview of the spread and impact of world Christianity
  • Contains studies from every major region of the world, including Africa, Asia, Latin America, the North Atlantic, and Oceania
  • Brings together an international team of contributors from history, sociology, and anthropology, as well as religious studies
  • Examines the significant social, cultural, and political transformations in contemporary societies brought about through the influence of Christianity
  • Takes a non-theological approach, focusing instead on the impact of and response to Christianity
  • Discusses Protestant, Evangelical, Catholic, and Orthodox forms of the faith
  • Features useful maps and illustrations
  • Combines broader discussions with detailed regional analysis, creating an invaluable introduction to world Christianity

This is an engaging multidisciplinary introduction to the worldwide spread and impact of Christianity. Bringing together chapters from leading scholars in history, sociology, anthropology, and religious studies, this book examines the major transformations in contemporary societies brought about through the influence of Christianity.

Each chapter shows how the broad themes within Christianity have been adopted and adapted by Christian denominations within each major region of the world. In this way, the book paints a global picture of the impact of Christianity, enriched by detailed historic and ethnographic material for each particular region. Throughout, the chapters examine Protestant, Evangelical, Catholic and Orthodox forms of Christianity. The combination of broader perspectives and deep analysis of particular regions, illuminating the social, cultural, political, and religious features of changes brought about by Christianity, makes this book essential reading for students of world Christianity.

Tocheva, “Crafting Ethics”

Tocheva, Detelina. 2011. Crafting Ethics: The Dilemma of Almsgiving in Russian Orthodox Churches. Anthropological Quarterly 84(4): 1011-1034.

Abstract: With the liberalization of religious practices after the fall of the Soviet regime in Russia, almsgiving to beggars in Russian Orthodox churches has become one of the most widespread forms of Orthodox charity. However, the priests are faced with an ethical dilemma: should they be charitable with beggars or should they sanction those who do not live according to certain moral standards? This article examines how Orthodox priests interact with different groups of beggars and how they create ethical ways of acting. It proposes that contemporary Russian Orthodox ethics are multi-referential, anchored in historicity, relatedness, interaction, and creative reasoning.

Werth, “Lived Orthodoxy and Confessional Diversity”

Werth, Paul (2011) “Lived Orthodoxy and Confessional Diversity
The Last Decade on Religion in Modern Russia” Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 12(4):849-65

Article Excerpt: “A decade ago in these pages, Gregory Freeze critiqued the historiography of religion since the fall of the USSR, remarking that it had “done little to illuminate the meaning of Orthodoxy in modern Russian society and culture.” Ten years on the situation looks rather different—in more ways than one. The meaning of Orthodoxy in a range of contexts has become a central preoccupation for historians of both the modern period and earlier eras. Indeed, in this essay I propose that a deep engagement with “lived Orthodoxy”—a concern for that religion as an adaptive cultural system and the variety of ways in which it was internalized and practiced—represents one of the principal accomplishments of the last decade.2 Nowhere has this development been more significant than in work on Orthodoxy in the rapidly changing conditions of late imperial Russia, which serves as the central focus of this essay. Indeed, the relationship between Orthodox piety and “modernity” has accordingly emerged as another central vector of the last decade’s scholarship. At the same time, it has become clear that Russia’s [End Page 849] religious history can no longer be contained under the heading “Russian Orthodoxy,” as was the case in Freeze’s essay. The scope of investigation has expanded substantially to include the other religions of Russian history—principally, but not only, Islam. These major themes—lived Orthodoxy, modernity, and multiconfessionalism—represent the three most significant trends in the scholarship of the last decade.”

Zigon, “HIV is God’s Blessing”

Zigon, Jarrett. 2011. “HIV is God’s Blessing”: Rehabilitating Morality in Neoliberal Russia. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Publisher’s Description: This provocative study examines the role of today’s Russian Orthodox Church in the treatment of HIV/AIDS. Russia has one of the fastest-growing rates of HIV infection in the world—80 percent from intravenous drug use—and the Church remains its only resource for fighting these diseases. Jarrett Zigon takes the reader into a Church-run treatment center where, along with self-transformational and religious approaches, he explores broader anthropological questions—of morality, ethics, what constitutes a “normal” life, and who defines it as such. Zigon argues that this rare Russian partnership between sacred and political power carries unintended consequences: even as the Church condemns the influence of globalization as the root of the problem it seeks to combat, its programs are cultivating citizen-subjects ready for self-governance and responsibility, and better attuned to a world the Church ultimately opposes.