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Modern Satanism : Anatomy of a Radical Subculture - Chris Mathews

Modern Satanism

Anatomy of a Radical Subculture

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In 1966, Anton LaVey introduced to the world the Church of Satan, an atheistic religion devoted to the philosophy of individualism and pitilessness often associated with Satan. Modern Satanism offers a comprehensive survey and analysis of the church that LaVey built. Satanism has been an open religion for forty years now and operates successfully in its self-created countercultural niche. Given the provocative nature of its name, contemporary Satanism is only superficially understood as an alternative religion/ideology, and all-too-frequently seen as a medieval superstition and associated with rumors of obscure rituals, perverse hedonism, cult-like behavior, and tales of ritual abuse and murder. These may be misconceptions, but the truth behind the unenviable reputation is no less dramatic. Satanism generally eschews supernatural beliefs and embodies a staunchly individualistic, pitiless, anti-egalitarian creed. If there is anything fundamentally diabolical about modern Satanism, it stems more from the echoes of Nazism in its theories than from its horror-comic trappings.

"Modern Satanism" covers the history, ideology, personalities, and practices of the decentralized international movement that contemporary Satanism has become. The work addresses the various beliefs and practices espoused by those who follow it: the ideal of Satan as a rebellious emblem; Satanism's occult, literary, and philosophical influences; the history of the Church of Satan and other Satanic organizations; the ideology of Satanism; Satanism's frequent flirtations and strong parallels with neo-Nazism and other forms of extremism; Satanism in the media and popular culture; and the reasons for Satanism's continuing attractiveness to new converts. Though the tone of the work attempts to remain neutral when discussing historical matters, it is by necessity critical of the subculture's extremist rhetoric and recurring associations with the far right and racialist extremism.

Industry Reviews

"... this volume will interest general readers and students of American religion at all levels. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above; general readers." - Choice

Introductionp. xi
The Morning Star: On the Origins of Satanp. 1
Earliest Originsp. 2
The Biblical Satanp. 3
Early and Medieval Christianityp. 7
The Gnostic Visionp. 10
The Perfidy of the Knights Templar (and Other Popular Fables)p. 12
The Impact of the Enlightenmentp. 16
Baleful Eyes: The Archfiend Gets an Entouragep. 21
Satan and the Literary Traditionp. 22
The Romanticsp. 25
The Intellectual Precursors to Satanism: Political Pessimismp. 28
Radical Individualismp. 31
A Literary Synthesisp. 34
Egoism Reduxp. 35
An Occult Digressionp. 36
The Many Faces of Satanp. 38
The Black Pope: The Making of a Mythp. 41
Myth and Historyp. 45
The Devil's Church Is Bornp. 48
The Famous and Infamousp. 51
The Satanic Biblep. 53
Entering the 1970sp. 57
Man, the Animal: The Doctrines of Modern Satanismp. 61
The Influence of the Egoistsp. 64
Animality and Carnalityp. 67
Human Society: The Satanic Perspectivep. 69
Thrasymachus versus Tit-for-Tatp. 72
The Infernal Diagnosisp. 77
Satanic Legions: Spreading the Gospel of the Black Popep. 81
Schismp. 83
The Temple of Setp. 84
Satanic Diasporap. 87
The Internet Agep. 91
The Black Pope Steps Asidep. 93
Satanism Todayp. 96
The Left Hand Path: Satanism and the Occult Traditionp. 101
Originsp. 102
The Occult in the Modern Erap. 103
Satanism and Magicp. 106
Nazi Occultism and Neo-paganismp. 110
Cthulhu, Chaos, and Shaitanp. 115
Science and Satanismp. 117
In the Company of Killers: Satanic Ritual Abuse and Satanic Social Politicsp. 121
Causes of the SRA Scarep. 122
Debunking the Scarep. 126
Aftermathp. 129
The Satanic Perspective on Satanic Crimep. 130
Satanic Social Politicsp. 132
Ethicsp. 135
The Plague of Nazism: Satanism and the Extreme Rightp. 139
The Feral House/Abraxas Cliquep. 142
Defenses: Nazism Scares People, Satan Scares Peoplep. 145
Mein Kampf as a Political Textbookp. 148
The Jewish Questionp. 149
Admit Nothing, Deny Everything, Make Counter-Accusationsp. 152
Satanism and Nazism: The Common Groundp. 154
Natural Born Satanists: The Psychology of Discriminating Iconoclastsp. 159
The Hero as Outsiderp. 160
Strength, Masculinity, and Authorityp. 164
Narcissism and Groupthinkp. 167
Aesthetic and Ideological Satanismp. 169
Sociologists and Satanismp. 172
A Mature Religious Option?p. 174
Apocalypse Cheerleaders: Satanism in Popular and Not-So-Popular Culturep. 177
The Devil and Heavy Metalp. 178
Heavy Metal Satanism in the Headlines: Marilyn and Vargp. 182
The New Counterculturep. 185
Apocalypse Culture and the Other Mansonp. 187
Esoteric Apocalyptic Culture Theoristsp. 190
Apocalypse Fallaciesp. 192
Conclusion: Worst Case Scenariop. 195
Notesp. 207
Selected Bibliographyp. 235
Indexp. 239
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780313366390
ISBN-10: 031336639X
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 246
Published: 1st February 2009
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 24.13 x 16.51  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.57