chapter  1
24 Pages

Introduction: Pentecostals, Prominence, and Politics

WithEdward L. Cleary

This book provides a unique view of Latin American Pentecostalism. Its contributors are seasoned Latin Americanists dealing with themes and contexts with which they have long familiarity. The book examines history, looking at the roots of Pentecostalism rather than concentrating on the recent invasion of the religious right from the United States. It employs social science, especially sociology and political science, rather than polemics or speculation. The book represents a mix of Pentecostal and non-Pentecostal, Latin American and North American scholars, all of them highly attentive to Pentecostal perspectives. In contrast to previously published volumes, the book presents Pentecostal perspectives rather than the agendas that have dominated social science or Latin American Catholic examinations of Pentecostal growth. It examines who Pentecostals are and why they have taken hold in Latin America are foremost, and addresses related questions of women in religion, ecumenism, and politics.