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Altering a (Problematic) Trajectory, Religious Content, and Conversion

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Chapter Summary

This chapter focuses on what happens in the course of a conversion and after, and how this relates to a person's attempts to alter an (often) "problematic trajectory". In which cases does the conversion allow converts to modify this "problematic trajectory", and in which cases does this not happen, and why? What role does networks and account-giving play in this process, and how does it differ between various religious groups? How converts experience and understand their conversion affects how they live their lives. The author found six different ways they do this, which is illustrated in the chapter. The currently dominant models in the sociology of conversion are network theory and strong social constructivism. Some network theorists claim that the benefits one reaps from networks are numerous and include such things as social capital, material benefits, a sense of belonging and stability, mental and physical health benefits, among others.

Keywords: conversion; network theory; problematic trajectory; religious groups; strong social constructivism



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