PROGRESS IN GEOGRAPHY ›› 2012, Vol. 31 ›› Issue (2): 201-209.doi: 10.11820/dlkxjz.2012.02.009

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Review on Foreign Geography of Religion in the Perspective of New Cultural Geography

CHEN Ningning1, ZHU Hong1,2   

  1. 1. School of Geography and Planning, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou 510275, China;
    2. Cultural Industry and Cultural Geography Research Center, South China Normal University, Guangzhou 510631, China
  • Received:2011-05-01 Revised:2011-10-01 Online:2012-02-25 Published:2012-02-25

Abstract: Under the global shifts, the research on geography of religion has become increasingly important. Driven by the new cultural geography, foreign geography of religion gives birth to many fresh issues and new research directions. Focusing on four key concepts (place, landscape, modernity and scale) in human geography, the present paper teases out the foreign literature on geography of religion in recent 10 years, and finds out that the main research issues can be included as follows: emphasis on the study of“unofficial sacred”sites; the attachments people develop with sacred places continuing a humanistic trend; the study of religious immigrants’ identity with the rise of transnationalism; interpretation of the implicit politics and symbolic meanings of religious landscape; establishment of different geographical scales of analyses; exploration of the tensions between the sacred and the secular places. By summing up the concerned issues of geography of religion, the present paper also introduces the foreign scholars’reflections on the definition of religion, the dialectic relationship between the geography of religion and religious geography, and the research trends of geography of religion. Above all, the work conducted in this paper hopes to provide new sights and inspirations for our scholars’local research on geography of religion.

Key words: geography of religion, landscape, modernity, new cultural geography, place, scale