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Cults and New Religions

A Brief History

An overview of the development of new religions and the controversies surrounding them in late modern society.

  • A stimulating, course-friendly overview of the history and development of new religious movements (NRMs) in the late twentieth century
  • Explores eight cults and NRMs, including the Church of Scientology, Transcendental Meditation, Unificationism, The Family International, the Ramtha School of Enlightenment, the Branch Davidians, Heaven’s Gate, and Wicca
  • Each chapter reviews the origins, leaders, beliefs, rituals and practices of a NRM, highlighting the specific controversies surrounding this group
  • Covers debates including what constitutes an authentic religion, the validity of claims of brainwashing techniques, the implications of experimentation with unconventional sexual practices, and the deeply rooted cultural fears that cults engender.