Vexen Crabtree (vexen) wrote,
Vexen Crabtree

A new book review! A Book Review of "Key Thinkers in the Sociology of Religion" by Richard Fenn

The central theme of this book is Fenn's commentary on time (past, present, future), "possibilities" (being used in a mystical but undefined way) and about how the sacred can effect individuals a society and the relationship of the sacred to religion. The author uses words about time and the sacred in confusing and abstract ways, and, this book needs an opening chapter where Fenn lays out his own basic ideas as to what those words mean. The eleven Key Thinkers each have a chapter, and Fenn mentions some of the texts and ideas of those authors. But much of the book is unreferenced and unclear waffle. The key thinkers are not examined methodically or clearly. Each one has only a few works referenced, and one of those is generally a compendium, and very few are directly quoted from. This book suffers from a lack of prime sources.

Arguments and contexts are fragmentary and incomplete, sentences and paragraphs often state "therefore" and "then" but do not follow from previous sentences or paragraphs, and in general it feels like this is a collection of essays whereby Fenn puts forward his ideas of time, past, present and future and the sacred, and pads out each chapter with some commentary on a sociologist.
Tags: book review, religion, richard fenn, sociology
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