Demonstrates the combined impact of religious orientations, macrosocietal structures, and virtuoso radicalism in shaping the ideological power of religious elites in the historical framework of the Great Traditions.
This book is a comparative macrosociological study of the interaction between religious virtuosi and society in two civilizations: traditional Theravada Buddhism and Medieval Catholicism. Merging Weberian sociology with the Maussian tradition of gift-analysis, and criticizing the neglect of meaning in current comparative historical sociology, the author also argues the need for a multidimensional approach capable of addressing the part played by religious orientations in shaping the institutional strength and ideological power of religious elites in the historical framework of the Great Traditions.
Table of Contents
Part I. Virtuosi and Society: Elements of
Macrosociological Approach: 1. The Weberian
2. Monasticism and social order: a
multidimensional perspective: Part II. Virtuosi
asnd Society in Theravada Buddhism: 3.
Ideological groundings: hierarchy and
4. Virtuosity institutionalized
The Sangha in Social Context
5. Virtuoso radicalism: the triumph of a
Part III. Virtuosi and Society in Medieval
Catholicism: 6. Ideological groundings:
plurality and conditional exchange
7. Virtuosity institutionalized: monasticism in
8. Virtuoso radicalism: a self-defeating triumph
Part IV. Virtuosity, Charisma and Social Order:
9. Virtuosity and the virtuoso-society syndrome
10. The virtuoso syndrome in comparative