This book offers a critical and systematic survey of the study of religion and digital media. It covers religious engagement with a wide range of digital media forms and highlights examples of new media engagement in all five of the major world religions. From mobile apps and video games to virtual reality and social media, the book:
• provides a detailed review of major topics including ritual, identity, community, authority, and embodiment;
• includes a series of engaging case studies to illustrate and elucidate the thematic explorations;
• considers the theoretical, ethical, and theological issues raised.
This unique volume draws together the work of experts from key disciplinary perspectives and is the go-to volume for students and scholars wanting to develop a deeper understanding of the subject area. Thoroughly updated throughout with new case studies and in-depth analysis of recent scholarship and developments, this new edition provides a comprehensive overview of this fast-paced, constantly developing, and fascinating field.
Table of Contents
1. Introduction to the Study of Digital Religion, Ruth Tsuria & Heidi A. Campbell
PART 1: Themes in the Study of Religion and New Media
2. Religion, Gregory Price Grieve
3. Ritual, Christopher Helland & Lisa Kienzl
4. Identity, Mia Lövheim & Evelina Lundmark
5. Community, Heidi A Campbell & Zachary Sheldon
6. Authority, Pauline Cheong
7. Embodiment, Kerstin Radde-Antweiler
PART 2: Thematic Case Studies
Finding Your True-Self: YouTubing the South Korean Temple Stay, Sam Han
A Little Birdie Told Me Something About Religion: Religion on Twitter, Daniel Veidlinger
A Case Study in Digital Religion: That Dragon, Cancer, John W. Borchert
Prayer App Rituals: How Islamic Participants Engage with Technological and Religious Affordances in Muslim Pro, Wendi Bellar
#EmptyThePews: Ex-evangelicals identity on Twitter, Ruth Tsuria
"The Niqab is a Beautiful Extension of My Face": Niqab Adoption as Meta-Conversion in YouTube Lifestreaming Videos, Anna Piela
Dual Production for Dual Publics: Chabad’s Inward and Outward Online Presence, Oren Golan
Stillness on the Hillside: Worship Online with British Quakers, Tim Hutchings
The Passive-Aggressive Haredi Campaign against the Smartphone, Hananel Rosenberg and Menahem Blondheim
Maintaining and Establishing Authority on Facebook: A Case Study on Catholic Priests, Brian Altenhofen
Gamified Embodiment Experiences in Indian Video Games, Xenia Zeiler
The Digital Afterlife, Amanda Lagerkvist
PART 3: Reflections on Studying Religion and Digital Media
14. Theoretical Frameworks for Approaching Religion and Digital Media, Knut Lundby & Giulia Evolvi
15. Ethical Issues in the Study of Religion and New Media, Mark D. Johns
16. Theology and the New Media, Stephen Garner
Heidi A. Campbell is Professor of Communication, Presidential Impact Fellow, and affiliate faculty in Religious Studies at Texas A&M University, USA. She is also director of the Network for New Media, Religion and Digital Culture Studies and a founder of Digital Religion studies, which explores how religious belief and practices are performed online and offline in digital culture.
Ruth Tsuria is Assistant Professor at the College of Communication and the Arts at Seton Hall University, USA. She has been given an Emerging Scholar Award by Religion in Society and received the inaugural Digital Religion Research Award from the Network for New Media, Religion and Digital Culture Studies for her contributions to Digital Religion studies.
Praise for the first edition:
"Digital Religion is a watershed publication that documents and defines the field, one that will quickly establish itself as an essential teaching text and reference volume. It deftly balances more theoretical overviews with specific case studies rich in needed context and detail. Through its inclusion of work on Buddhist, Hindu, and other non-Western traditions, the book succeeds in the essential goal of providing genuinely global coverage of digital religion."
Charles Ess, University of Oslo, Norway
"Digital religion is evolving quickly from its creation. This network of scholars analyze in depth how people are finding their spiritual selves and community online."
Barry Wellman, University of Toronto, Canada