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The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions (Oxford Paperback Reference) [Abridged] [Paperback]

by John Bowker
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions (Oxford Paperback Reference) The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions (Oxford Paperback Reference) 2.5 out of 5 stars (2)
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Book Description

December 14, 2000 0192800949 978-0192800947
Abridged from the acclaimed Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, this is the most comprehensive and up-to-date dictionary of religion available in paperback. Written by an expert team of 80 international and multi-faith contributors, the volume contains over 8,200 entries, an extensive topic index, and an original and in-depth introductory essay. There is also a detailed system of cross-references so that readers can explore related topics in the book. Readers will find information on:
Religions: Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Shinto, Sikhism, Taoism, and much more
Movements, Sects, and Cults: Over 500 entries on everything from Cargo Cults and the New Age movement to Rastafarians and Soka Gakkai
Sacred Texts: Over 1,000 entries covering the sacred writings of religions worldwide
Individuals: Including founders, leaders, gurus, philosophers, mystics, and heretics
Sacred Sites: Cities, buildings, centers of pilgrimage
Customs: Religious practices, dogmas, beliefs, traditions, festivals and fasts, and artifacts such as altars, rosaries, icons, and torah ornaments
Ethics: Entries cover world-wide religious teachings on abortion, animals, birth control, war, sexuality and homosexuality, and suicide

Editorial Reviews


"Covers a vast range of topics both comprehensive and reliable."--The Times(London) Reviews from previous edition:"Will prove its worth for the growing number of people interested in different religions."--Guardian

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Professor John Bowker is Gresham Professor, London and Adjunct Professor at the University of Pennsylvania. A former Professor of Religion at the University of Lancaster, he is a highly regarded authority on religious studies and a well-known broadcaster on BBC Radio and World Service.

Product Details

  • Series: Oxford Paperback Reference
  • Paperback: 736 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA (December 14, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192800949
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192800947
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.1 x 1.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,563,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

2.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Darn good reference work! December 14, 2001
By A Customer
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
For pure bulk of information on anything and everything having to do with religion, this is the 800-lb. gorilla of dictionaries.

There's just so much jammed into this small, yet thick dictionary. It's filled with so many tidbits and details about the world's major religions that (if you're interested) you'll keep turning page after page. Sometimes the multiple cross-references can overwhelm you, though. It would have been nice to have something to tie everything together; the information can be as diffuse as it is profuse. The dictionary presupposes one has some knowledge of the religions already.

Regrettably, I noted that several definitions are shaded in a very snarky, mean way against the Roman Catholic Church. I cannot account for the negativity, but its presence is there . . . and, it doesn't occur for other Christian denominations or religions.

Otherwise, a fine addition to anyone's library.
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14 of 24 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Authoritative, Unbiased...? NOT! August 25, 2003
By Anne
I have searched for a straightforward, clear cut explanation of the world's major religions. Like many people, I tend to give weight to prestigious names like "Oxford" mistakenly believing that the name lends credibility and accuracy to the product.
I am by no means a Holy Roller. I have problems with Christianity myself, but the anti-Christian rhetoric in the book is inescapable and vile. The author undoubtedly has an agenda and it's not to present a well balanced, unopinionated view of faiths in the world.
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