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Teaching New Religious Movements$
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David G. Bromley

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195177299

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195177299.001.0001

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New Religious Movements, Countermovements, Moral Panics, and the Media

New Religious Movements, Countermovements, Moral Panics, and the Media

(p.91) New Religious Movements, Countermovements, Moral Panics, and the Media
Teaching New Religious Movements

James T. Richardson (Contributor Webpage)

Massimo Introvigne

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the development of New Religious Movements (NRMs) in the West, as well as countermovements that were designed to exert control over such movements. Such opposing movements included both counter-cult movements which focused on content of beliefs, and more secular anti-cult movements which attended more to behaviors, but also used the “brainwashing” myth as a major justification for intervention. The development of a major moral panic in the US and other countries concerning NRMs is described, as is the key role played by the media in conjunction with anti-cult organizations. Teaching exercises are recommended for helping students understand the phenomena being described.

Keywords:   anti-cult movements, counter-cult movements, brainwashing, social construction, cult wars, deprogramming, the media

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