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Book Cover for: Religious Mourning: Reversals and Restorations in Psychological Portraits of Religious Leaders, Nathan Carlin

Religious Mourning: Reversals and Restorations in Psychological Portraits of Religious Leaders

Nathan Carlin

Religious Mourning is about a common experience among those who study religion: religious loss. When people of faith study religion critically, or when life experiences such as death and divorce trigger personal reflection on faith, religious intellectuals often become estranged from their own tradition. Sometimes this estrangement causes them to leave religion altogether. But for those who study religion from a psychological perspective, a certain kind of introspective and iconoclastic religiosity can be revived by means of academic writing. Religious Mourning explores this phenomenon by focusing on psychobiographical writings about religious leaders--including Donald Capps' portrait of Jesus of Nazareth, James Dittes' portrait of Saint Augustine, and William Bouwsma's portrait of John Calvin--to show how these authors' personal lives, and especially their experiences of loss, influence their scholarship. As Capps, Dittes, and Bouwsma subversively scavenge the lives of Jesus, Augustine, and Calvin to reverse and restore a religion that is rich with experience, including (and especially) their own, they invite us to do the same.

Book Details

  • Publisher: Wipf & Stock Publishers
  • Publish Date: Apr 24th, 2014
  • Pages: 152
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 9.00in - 6.00in - 0.30in - 0.00lb
  • EAN: 9781498265775
  • Categories: Christian Ministry - Pastoral ResourcesChristian Church - General

About the Author

Carlin, Nathan: - Nathan Carlin, an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA), is Associate Professor at the University of Texas Medical School in Houston, TX, and Book Review Editor for Pastoral Psychology. His primary academic appointment is in the McGovern Center for Humanities and Ethics. He has coauthored two books: Living in Limbo: Life in the Midst of Uncertainty (2010) and 100 Years of Happiness: Insights and Findings from the Experts (2012).

Praise for this book

By intricately tracing key sets of conflicts, correspondences, and thematic recurrences, Nathan Carlin offers a moving and insightful collection of portraits of influential religious leaders and the scholars who study them. Working lucidly through a series of comparative case studies, Religious Mourning represents an important contribution to the literary history of religious studies--and, even more suggestively--to the psychology of the psychology of religion.
--Marcia Brennan, Rice University, Houston, TX

Carlin is an extraordinary addition to scholarship and discussions about the integration of religious and spiritual perspectives into psychiatric and general medical care. Religious Mourning allows professionals from diverse educational formations to appreciate new adverse and adaptive consequences of actual or imagined separation, loss, and transition experiences. Using his ideas to elaborate previous work of psychoanalytic researchers, like Vaillant and Pollock, has enormous potential.
--James Lomax, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX

Interweaving an analysis of social change and cultural creativity with a reflection on the life and work of three psychologists of religion, Carlin finds patterns of loss and recovery echoing through biographical, intellectual, and cultural realms. Successfully building on psychological and cultural analyses of the ability to mourn, Carlin produces a thoughtful reading of scholarship in religious studies as reversal and restoration.
--Diane Jonte-Pace, Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, CA

Religious Mourning is a compelling exploration of the intricate ways in which the personal lives of scholars intersect with their scholarship. Nathan Carlin writes with an elegant clarity that invites us to not only explore the lives of Peter Homans, Donald Capps, James Dittes, and William Bouwsma along with their sophisticated and influential scholarship on Sigmund Freud, Jesus, Saint Augustine, and John Calvin, but also to unearth the connections between our own personal lives and our work as scholars of religion . . . Read this illuminating book and be inspired and informed!
--Lewis R. Rambo, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea