The Kingfisher Book of Religions: Festivals, Ceremonies, and Beliefs from Around the World

 
9780753451991: The Kingfisher Book of Religions: Festivals, Ceremonies, and Beliefs from Around the World

The Kingfisher Book of Religions is a comprehensive, up-to-date reference that will help children understand the role played by religion in today's multi-cultural society, and explain its influence on world events and history. Special focus on the role religion plays in children's lives. Richly illustrated with full-color photographs, maps, and artwork, and accompanied by an engaging and informative text, The Kingfisher Book of Religions brings to life the cultures of the world's major faiths. From the ritual shaving of the heads of young Buddhist monks in Burma to the Whirling Dervishes of Turkish Sufism, The Kingfisher Book of Religions offers a wide-ranging view of not only the major world religions, but also many less well-known belief systems, past and present. Special Features: Illustrated features highlight festivals, customs, ceremonies, traditions, and clothing. Easy-to-understand articles discuss the various faiths, religious founders, rites, and rituals. Glossary andc omprehensive index.

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About the Author:

Trevor Barnes is an award winning presenter of many BBC Television documentaries on the subject of religion, as well as BBC World Service news broadcasts, radio shows, and live chat shows. He is also the author of several books including Archaeology in the Kingfisher Knowledge series, The Wounded City, a book about the people of Belfast, Northern Ireland, and a biography of Terry Waite, Man With A Mission.

From Booklist:

The book jacket states that this guide to world religions focuses "particularly on how they affect the lives of the children who practice them today." However, though there are scattered photographs of children participating in religious activities, children are not particularly emphasized in the text. The format and layout, in a style familiar from DK's Eyewitness series, is attractive and enticing, with each religion presented in a two-page spread and at least one full-color illustration per page. There are 12 chapters, each covering a different theme ("Ancient Religions," "Chinese Religions,") or tradition (Shinto, Christianity, Islam). Within chapters, arrangement is topical. Among the topics are "Hindu Gods and Goddesses," "Life in a Buddhist Monastery," "The Jewish Calendar," and "Islamic Law and Science." Sidebars add bits of information, such as "The Seder Meal" and "The History of Easter Bread."

This work lacks detail, and the coverage tends to be uneven. Buddha's Four Noble Truths and The Noble Eightfold Path are listed in sidebars, but the Ten Commandments are not. Religious festivals, a favorite research topic, are mentioned in one chapter and not in the next. On the plus side, the sections on Aborigines, Native Americans, Jainism, and Zoroastrianism reflect changing cultural awareness. Excellent features include the illustrations and the pie chart and time line in the introduction. More comprehensive than Mary Pope Osborne's One World, Many Religions (Knopf, 1996), this volume is recommended as an attractive introduction for libraries serving intermediate and middle-school students.

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Trevor Barnes
Published by Kingfisher (1999)
ISBN 10: 0753451999 ISBN 13: 9780753451991
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