The Invention of Satanism
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The Invention of Satanism

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Description

Satanism is a complex and controversial phenomenon co-existing in many social and rhetorical contexts. Some consider it the root of all evil in the world. Others see it as a juvenile proxy for rebellion or as a misapplication of serious esoteric beliefs and practices. Then again, some consider it a specific religious or philosophical position serving as a personal and collective identity. This book, written by three experts in the field of Satanism studies, examines Satanism as a contemporary movement in continuous dialogue with popular culture, aiding as a breeding ground for other new religious movements. Shifting the focus from mythology to meaning-making, this is a book about the invention of Satanism among self-declared religious Satanists. Like all ideologists and believers, Satanists incorporate, borrow, and modify elements from other traditions, and this book explores how traditional folklore and prior strands of occultism were synthesized by Anton LaVey in his founding of the Church of Satan and the creation of the Satanic Bible. Later chapters examine contemporary Satanist subcultures from various perspectives, also demonstrating how Satanism, despite its brief history as an organized phenomenon, continues to reinvent itself. There are now numerous Satanisms with distinctive interpretations of what being a Satanist entails, with some of these new versions deviating more from the historical "mainstream" than others. In this fascinating account of a seemingly abstruse and often-feared movement, Dyrendal, Lewis, and Petersen demonstrate that the invention of Satanism is an ongoing, ever-evolving process.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 272 pages
  • 163 x 241 x 21mm | 524g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195181107
  • 9780195181104
  • 585,812

Review quote

An important contribution to the field of Satanism studies... This volume functions as an excellent introduction to the subject in addition to establishing central research avenues in the field, supplemented by illuminating discussions of work that remains to be done. The Invention of Satanism will be a good first reference for both specialists and lay readers interested in Satanism, along with those investigating the various and overlapping fields of new religious movements, Paganism, occultism, the subjects of religious rhetoric, and other alternative religious currents and antinomian discourses. * Nova Religio *show more

About Asbjorn Dyrendal

Asbjorn Dyrendal is Professor of Religious Studies at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, Norway.; James R. Lewis is Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Tromso in Tromso, Norway.; Jesper Aa. Petersen is Associate Professor at the Programme for Teacher Education at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, Norway.show more

Table of contents

Acknowledgements ; Preface: Introducing Satanism ; Chapter 1 - Anthropology of Evil: The Folklore of Satanism ; Chapter 2 - Satanic Precursors ; Chapter 3 - The Age of Satanism: Anton LaVey and the Church of Satan ; Chapter 4 - The Satanic Bible ; Chapter 5 - Reading Satanism through Demonology: The Satanism Scare ; Chapter 6 - Adopting Satanic Identities ; Chapter 7 - Little Nicky Grows Up? ; Chapter 8 - Satanic Attitudes ; Chapter 9 - Children of the Black Goat ; Epilogue: Satanism in Play ; Notes ; Bibliography ; Indexshow more

Rating details

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