The first collaborative effort by a distinguished international team of sociologists, anthropologists, historians, political scientists, theologians, and religious studies scholars to uncover what's behind Pentecostalism's worldwide appeal due to its promise of healing. A richly nuanced approach thick with description. 416 pages, softcover. Oxford University.
Pentecostal and Charismatic Christianity is a global phenomenon that comprises a quarter of the world's two billion Christians and is growing rapidly. This volume reveals that the primary appeal of pentecostalism worldwide is as a religion of healing. Contrary to popular stereotypes of flamboyant, fraudulent, anti-medical "faith healing" televangelists who preach a materialistic, "health and wealth" gospel, handle serpents, or sensationally "exorcize" demons, this book offers a more nuanced portrait. The collected essays illumine local variations, hybridities, and tensions in practices on six continents, and depict the extent of human suffering and powerlessness experienced by people everywhere and the attractiveness to many of a global religious movement that promises material relief by invoking spiritual resources.
This is the first book of its kind. Achieving the twin goals of thick description and comparative analysis of global practices is best achieved by bringing area experts into conversation. This volume's distinguished, international team of contributors includes sociologists, anthropologists, historians, political scientists, theologians, and religious studies scholars from North America, Europe, and Africa. Read together, these essays set the agenda for a new program of scholarly inquiry into some of the largest forces of change at work in the world today-globalization, pentecostalism, and healing-each of which is extremely powerful in itself and which together are reshaping our world in vastly significant ways.
Candy Gunther Brown received her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 2000. She is an associate professor of Religious Studies at Indiana University, and the author of The Word in the World: Evangelical Writing, Publishing, and Reading in America, 1789-1880.
"There can now be no doubt that Pentecostal-Charismatic healing will continue to flower all over the world. It is something no thoughtful person can afford to ignore. We need careful, accurate, empathic, and unprejudiced studies of this reality in all its multitudinous expressions, including healing. And this volume provides the gold standard against which all future efforts will have to be judged."-- Harvey G. Cox, Jr., Hollis Research Professor of Divinity, Harvard University
"...a unique set of cross-cultural and cross national case studies that allow for a deeper understanding of the role that healing plays within todays's increasingly globalized world."--CHOICE
"The text demonstrates unequivocally that 'Charismatic-Pentecostalism' proves 'feeling is believing.' The book is foundational without antecedent or peer, possessing broad appeal for students and scholars of religion."--Religious Studies ReviewGlobal Pentecostal and Charismatic Healing
is an invaluable contribution to the field of religious studies. The book is highly informative and rich in descriptive detail. The diversity of its contributors...makes for a highly readable text that will appeal to a wide range of interests."--Religion
"The care that Candy Gunther Brown took in author selection and editing is evident in this fascinating and insightful volume...I am certain this book will prove an invaluable resource to scholars and students of all Christian traditions, indeed anyone interested in healing, globalization, or mission."--Pneuma