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date: 18 October 2018

Abstract and Keywords

The concepts of church and sect, along with the related terms of denomination and cult, have been central to religious group classification and theorizing about religious group organization by religion scholars. This classificatory system has been particularly problematic for scholars studying new religious movements. The chapter rehearses the origins and development of these concepts and then considers some of the newer and more inclusive relationally-based typologies that address the ongoing critiques of the church-sect model .

Keywords: church, denomination, sect, cult, new religious movement, typology, Weber, Troeltsch, Niebuhr, Yinger

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