“The Hare Krishna Movement – Forty Years of Chant and Change”

By Radha Mohan Das for ISKCON News on 3 Feb 2010
Recently, a groundbreaking academic book edited by Graham Dwyer and Richard J. Cole had been published by I.B. Taurus in the UK. The book focuses for the first time on what is currently taking place inside the Hare Krishna Movement, and examines the changes and developments that have shaped it over the past forty years.

Hare Krishna after 40 years in the WestRecently, a groundbreaking academic book edited by Graham Dwyer and Richard J. Cole had been published by I.B. Taurus in the UK. The book focuses for the first time on what is currently taking place inside the Hare Krishna Movement, and examines the changes and developments that have shaped it over the past forty years. The essays offer an unparalleled overview of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON), and explore a wide range of topical issues and themes. These include: the politics and history of the Movement; membership patterns; recruitment strategies; pedagogical and social factors; the importance of dreams and ritual; and ISKCON’s articulation of traditional theology in the context of the Movement’s evolution. The result is a book that will be essential reading for scholars and students of religion in the modern world, and which explains in full how this fascinating Hindu devotional tradition continues to flourish in the land of its origin – India – as well as in the West.

Reviews

“…an essential review and timely update on the growing and maturing phenomenon of worldwide Krishna-devotionalism. For storytracking the Hare Krishna movement as an important focal point in today’s increasingly varied landscape of spiritual practices and aspirations, this collection is a welcome resource.”–Kenneth Valpey (Krishna Ksetra das), Research Fellow, Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies

“This is a fascinating and insightful collection that will prove to be of great interest to students of the Hare Krishna movement and of new religious movements generally. The contributors include both Hare Krishna scholars as well as established academics from the field of religious studies. The volume’s real strength derives from its focus on change and on how the Hare Krishna movement has increasingly sought to come to grips with the modern world whilst retaining its distinctive self-identity. Taken as a whole, the book reveals a whole new intellectual landscape and puts a refreshing new perspective on our understanding the Hare Krishna phenomenon” –E. Burke Rochford, Jr, Professor of Sociology and Religion, Middlebury College

For more information contact radha.mohan.bcs@googlemail.com

Posted in In the News.