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Faithful NarrativesHistorians, Religion, and the Challenge of Objectivity$
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Andrea Sterk and Nina Caputo

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780801451829

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801451829.001.0001

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The Challenge of Religion in History

(p.1) Introduction
Faithful Narratives

Andrea Sterk

Nina Caputo

Cornell University Press

This introductory chapter explains the importance of examining the work of twelve scholars, whose research about religious traditions and communities have exemplified strategies for overcoming the difficulties inherent in this subfield of historical study. To facilitate discussion, the book operates on two levels. First, by incorporating widely varied case studies and approaches, it captures the unifying focus on faith as a historical force that had had consequences in the lives of individuals and in the development of communities. Second, the essays themselves are narratives that attempt to be faithful to the demands of critical analysis and sensitive to the beliefs, ideals, and struggles of their religious subjects. These studies address the challenges of integrating a scholarly engagement with religious texts, practices, people, and power into historical analysis and narrative.

Keywords:   religious traditions, religious communities, historical study, faith, religion, religious texts, religious power

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