Michael J. Buckley S
The rise of atheism in the modern world is a religious phenomenon unprecedented in history, both in the number of its adherents and in the security of its cultural establishment. How did so revolutionary a conviction as this arise? What can theological reflection learn from this massive shift in religious consciousness?
In this book, Michael J. Buckley investigates the origins and development of modern atheism and argues convincingly that its impetus lies paradoxically in the very attempts to counter it. Although modern atheism finds its initial exponents in Denis Diderot and Paul d’Holbach in the eighteenth century, their works bring to completion a dialectical process that reaches back to the theologians and philosophers of an earlier period. During the seventeenth century, theologians such as Leonard Lessius and Marin Mersenne determined that in order to defend the existence of god, religious apologetics must become philosophy, surrendering as its primary warrant any intrinsically religious experience or evidence. The most influential philosophers of the period, René Descartes and Isaac Newton, and the theologians who followed them accepted this settlement, and the new sciences were enlisted to provide the foundation for religion.
Almost no one suspected the profound contradictions that this process entailed and that would eventually resolve themselves through the negation of god. In transferring to other areas of human experience and inquiry its fundamental responsibility to deal with the existence of god, religion dialectically generated its own denial. The origins and extraordinary power of modern atheism lie with this progressive self-alienation of religion itself.
Poland's Journalists: Professionalism and Politics examines the position of journalists and journalism in Poland from the beginning of the country's trauma and revolts in 1948 until the disappointments of Solidarity and its repression by martial law in the 1980s. The author explores journalists' responses--both professionally and politically--to their country's crises, and convincingly argues that they shared common interests and values; that they developed formal and informal organizations and that their self-identification as a professional group is comparable with their journalistic counterparts in the West. This book draws on a variety of published sources, on some 249 interviews with journalists and on surveys. It provides a unique case study of Polish journalists and is a major contribution to the sociological study of professionalism under communism.
Steven M. Gelber and Martin L. Cook
Research into the phenomenon of "new religious movements" has become a major focus of attention for social scientists over the last twenty years. Sociologists in particular, but also historians and anthropologists, have been attracted to the unique quality of these groups—that of being both inside and outside the dominant culture. Although, on the one hand, new religions are an expression of social trends and therefore a barometer of cultural values, on the other, by rejecting the established churches they place themselves beyond borders of mainstream society and its values. The emergence of new religions challenges traditional religions and thereby provides scholars with a special opportunity to examine the dynamics of religious belief and practice. So many new movements have emerged that scholarship about them has resulted in a body of work daunting in size and scope.
Since new religious groups generally either do not keep archives or have been unwilling to make the papers they do have available to scholars, virtually all students of contemporary religious movements have been forced to obtain their data from interviews and/or participant-observation. These studies are, therefore, necessarily limited in their longitudinal analysis both of the leaders' lives and of the history of the movements. Confined to a several-year period at most, they tend to ignore change over time in favor of a detailed synchronic analysis of the groups as they exist during the period of field investigation. As a result, the new religions are frequently perceived as static entities whose various qualities allow them to be fit into specific categories such as church or sect, charismatic or democratic, eastern or western, and so forth. As useful as such ahistorical categorization may be, it obscures the fact that religions are dynamic institutions that evolve over time in response to changes both in their external environment and in their internal relations. Due to our access to an unprecedented amount of historical documentation, this study can attempt to break through this fixed view of religious movements. We will specifically show how the complex mix of personalities, institutional needs, and social conditions interacted across time to move a religious group through several standard categories.
Much of this book is the story of the group's husband and wife leaders, especially the wife, Emilia Rathbun, who had all the qualities of a charismatic leader, yet refused to become a guru or prophet. At the same time, this book is also the study of a group of people who dramatically belie the facile assumption that new religious groups appeal to marginal people suffering from some sort of relative deprivation. Members of Creative Initiative were the epitome of successful mainstream Americans. Ethnically, financially, educationally, and socially, they would seem to have been the least likely of people to deviate from the religious norm, and in some very profound ways they did not. Although on the surface Creative Initiative appears to have been a major departure from mainline religion, in fact it was in some ways also a continuation and even a rejuvenation of traditional American religious values.
The chemical industry was Japan's first "high-tech" industry, and its companies the most important examples of a noteworthy business structure in the prewar period, the so-called "new zaibatsu."
Molony deals with one branch of the chemical industry--electrochemicals--with shorter descriptions of related branches. At the hear of the book is the story of Noguchi Jun, founder of Japan Nitrogenous Fertilizers (Nippon Chisso Hiryō) and one of Japan's best known twentieth-century entrepreneurs. Noguchi's firm developed from a fertilizer company to a multifaceted company producing a wide range of technologically sophisticated products while he forged ties with civilian and military leaders in Japan and Korea who controlled access to capital and to the hydroelectricity needed for chemical manufacture. The book also treats the second and third waves of investment and electrochemicals during the 1920s and 1930s.
This study analyzes the nature of prewar Japanese entrepreneurship, the links between technology and investment, the emergence of a class of scientific managers, and the relationship of business strategy to imperialism in the years leading up to World War II.
Printing is not supported at the primary Gallery Thumbnail page. Please first navigate to a specific Image before printing.