Dr. Dong Young Kim (STH 11)
Understanding Religious Conversion: The Case of St. Augustine.
Synopsis: Understanding Religious Conversion begins with emphasis on the value of respecting religious/theological interpretations of conversion while coordinating social scientific studies of how personal, social, and cultural issues are relevant to the human transformational process. It encourages us to bring together the perspectives of psychology, sociology, anthropology, and religious studies into critical and mutually-informing conversation for establishing a richer and more accurate perception of the complex phenomenon of religious conversion. The case of St. Augustine’s conversion experience superbly illustrates the complicated and multidimensional process of religious change. By critically extending the contributions of the literature within Lewis Rambo’s interdisciplinary framework, Dong Young Kim presents a more integrated picture of how personal, social, cultural, and religious/theological components interact with one another in the process of Augustine’s conversion.