Vocabulary for the Study of Religion

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Robert A. Segal & Kocku von Stuckrad.

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The Vocabulary for the Study of Religion offers a unique overview of critical terms in the study of religion(s). This first dictionary in English covers a broad spectrum of theoretical topics used in the academic study of religion, including those from adjacent disciplines such as sociology, anthropology, historiography, theology, philology, literary studies, psychology, philosophy, cultural studies, and political sciences.

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Icon / Iconography

(3,745 words)

Author(s): Sebastian Schüler | Isabel Laack
Abstract: Icons constitute much of everyday religiosity, often being treated like representations or incarnations of gods or deities. The study of icons (iconography) therefore represents an interest…


(1,988 words)

Author(s): Diane Apostolos-Cappadona
Abstract: Iconoclasm is traditionally understood as the violent destruction of images for religious reasons. Yet the term has become used more broadly to refer to the suppression or annihilation of i…
Date: 2014-09-16


(3,527 words)

Author(s): Ulrike Popp-Baier
Abstract: Since the late 1950s, “identity” has been a popular topic in social science and in public discourse. Philosophical discussions about personal identity culminated in a concept of narrative i…
Date: 2014-09-16


(2,936 words)

Author(s): Roland Boer
Abstract: Ideology is understood in two, not always compatible, senses: as a “critical” category that designates “false consciousness” — an inverted or distorted view of the world that must be unmask…
Date: 2014-09-16

Idol / Idolatry

(2,311 words)

Author(s): Gerald Hawting
Abstract: First, the sources of the concept of idols and idolatry are discussed with reference to the translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek. Consideration of ideas about idols in the Bible and o…