Institutional Repository

Religion and culture

Item

Author

Santucci, James A.

Date

2005

Volume

6

Pages

40-54

ISSN

1530-4108

Abstract

Of all the disciplines in the humanities, religion offers a unique problem in definition. It is generally conceded that no universally satisfactory definition of religion exists due to a number of factors: failure to delimit religious experience from non-religious experience; failure to agree whether a religion is purely an internalized experience or a predominantly behavioral experience; the tendency to define religion through differing disciplines, thereby interpreting religion in accordance with the discipline's limited role in knowledge. This paper will discuss these problems by reviewing some of the more important definitions over the past two millennia: Cicero, Lactantius, Immanuel Kant, Karl Marx, Emile Durkheim, and Clifford Geertz. In addition, the relation of religion to culture will be addressed, how culture is viewed by the likes of E. B. Tylor, B. Malinowski, M. Mead, Ward Goodenough, and others.


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