Cults: Faith, Healing and Coercion

Cults: Faith, Healing and Coercion

3.77 (74 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

Why do people join cults? How do cults exert such a strong influence over their members' beliefs and even their appearance? These and other questions about the operation of cult groups are answered in this unique book. The psychological forces that enable cults to exert their intense influence are analysed in detail and with many examples. These forces include social cohesiveness, which has its parallels in the ties that bind family members together; shared beliefs, which set the groups' standards for behaviour; and altered consciousness, which can lead to a rapid change in the attitudes of recruits and members. For this second edition, Galanter has added three new chapters on cult developments of the 1990s - the Branch Davidians, Aum Shinrikyo, and Heaven's Gate. The books also features 32 new photographs.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 288 pages
  • 166.9 x 231.9 x 28.2mm | 656.9g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised
  • 2nd Revised edition
  • 32 halftones, 1 line drawing
  • 0195123697
  • 9780195123692

Back cover copy

From the mass weddings of Sun Myung Moon's Unification Church to the ritual suicides at Heaven's Gate, charismatic cults and their devotees have become facts of American life. Using material gleaned from twenty-five years of direct encounters with cults and their detractors, as well as extensive research, Marc Galanter offers the most extensive psychological analysis of these organizations available. Cults explores not only how members feel and think at all stages of their involvement, but also how larger social and psychological forces reinforce individual commitment within the cults.show more

Review quote

Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York Times Book Review."[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Century Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York Times Book Review."[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Century Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York Times Book Review."[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Century Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York Times Book Review. "[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Century Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York Times Book Review. "[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Century Praise for the first edition: "Anyone wishing to understand the psychodynamics of [charismatic groups] should pick up Cults....[Galanter] has been a student of cult-like activity for the better part of two decades; this book represents a thoughtful and provocative summation of what he has learned."--Mark Silk, The New York TimesBook Review."[Galanter] encourages us to think carefully about the extent to which our society can tolerate pluralism, innovation, and 'deviance.'...Galanter's approach gives us an urgently needed framework that can improve the quality of discussions about cults."--The Christian Centuryshow more

About Marc Galanter

Marc Galanter is Professor of Psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine.show more

Rating details

74 ratings
3.77 out of 5 stars
5 19% (14)
4 47% (35)
3 27% (20)
2 5% (4)
1 1% (1)
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