Friday, February 19, 2010

New Publications on Religion Online

I wanted to introduce readers to 3 recent publication on religion online.

Daniel Arasa, Lorenzo Cantoni & Lucio A. Ruiz (Eds.), (2010). Religious Internet Communication. Facts, Trends and Experiences in the Catholic Church, Rome: EDUSC 2010.
Religious Internet Communication. Facts, Trends and Experiences in the Catholic Church offers readers and researchers a comprehensive overview of Catholic usages of Internet communication by providing a solid review of the creativity and motivations of Church innovators who have utilized different facets of network technologies to extend the Church’s work and solidify its internal communications. The book features fifteen cases encompassing various application areas, from Vatican online communication, to that of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, up to the websites of Opus Dei and Communion and Liberation offering a better understand the richness and complexity of online Church communication.

Heidi Campbell, (2010). Religious Authority and the Blogosphere. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 15(2),pp. 251-276.
It is often argued that the internet poses a threat to traditional forms of authority. Within studies of religion online claims have also been made that the internet is affecting religious authority online, but little substantive work has backed up these claims. This paper argues for an approach to authority within online studies which looks separately at authority: roles, structures, beliefs/ideologies and texts. This approach is applied to a thematic analysis of 100 religious blogs and demonstrates that religious bloggers use their blogs to frame authority in ways that may more often affirm than challenge traditional sources of authority.

Craig Detweiler (Ed.), (2010). Halos and Avatars: Playing Video Games With God. Louisville, Ky: Westminster John Knox Press.
Detweiler brings together a group of experts to explore the spiritual and theological implications of video gaming and together they explore issues such the formation and implications of gaming communities, how gaming impacts childeren's moral fomration and how religion gets framed and contested in different gaming genres.

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