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SOC250Y1 (1)
Chapter 3

study guide chapter 3

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University of Toronto St. George
Joseph Bryant

- Redfield calls the big tradition the official beliefs as defined by elites. - The small tradition the more popular version of religion to which everyday people adhere. - This worldly and other-worldly religious orientations- does a religion emphasize religious ethical activity in this lifetime or does it focus on what happens to people after they die or after a major transformation in the world such as the coming of a messiah. Relying solely on religious texts to determine whether a tradition is this-worldly or otherworldly may be misleading- however a text emphasizing rewards in the next life for example- may serve to focus a believers attention on how he or she lives in this one.Sometimes other worldly language may refer to both an afterlife and to hope within this world, sometimes in disguised rhetoric as in most African American spirituals. - Many ninteenth and early twentieth century scholars attempted to make sense of the broad range of religious behaviour observed around the world during the colonial period.Using the metaphor of physical evolution. - Sir James Frazer- argues that religion grew out of magic practices, an argument now widely discredited for its ethnocentric implications about a model of progressive development leading from primitive to more advanced. Frazers theory was similar to earlier contentions by Auguste Comte that humans have progressed from a theological to a metaphysical, and finally to a scientific stage, in which arbitrary superstition gives way to rational scientific knowledge.(theological- >metaphysical->scientific knowledge) - Tylor- sometimes called the father of modern anthropology contended that the earliest and most basic religious forms were animistic, giving way first to fetishism, then a belief in demons, then polytheism, and finally monotheism.(early and most basic religions were animistic(giving way to) fetishism->a belief in demons- >polytheism->monotheism) - Marx and Engels- linked their theory of religious evolution to dialectical materialism. Because religious evolution is an epiphenomenon of economic processes, they said, as the modes of production changed so did religion. www.notesolution.com
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