PNEUMA: The Journal of the Society for Pentecostal Studies, Volume 28, No. 2, Fall 2006 © 2006 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden pp. 278–282 1 See Arthur L. Greil and David Bromley, eds., Defining Religion: Investigating the Boundaries Between the Sacred and Secular (New York: Elsivier Science Ltd., 2003). 2 Allan Anderson, An Introduction to Pentecostalism: Global Charismatic Christianity . (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2004). When is a Pentecostal a Pentecostal? The Global Perspective of Allan Anderson Michael Wilkinson In the sociology of religion there is much discussion and debate about the nature of religion in contemporary societies, if not in a global world. 1 The issues are not simply about definition and whether a researcher employs a substantive or a functional strategy. These debates highlight the con- tested, if not arbitrary, boundaries of what counts as religion and who is counting. Definitions are never neutral and always problematic. Issues of power and authority are at the root of many disputes over the distinction between “official” and “popular” expressions, colonial encounters, and multicultural contexts. Western concepts of religion emerged at a partic- ular point in history and have shaped our understanding of religion. Not surprisingly, the nature of
Pneuma – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2006
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