ABSTRACT

Is rave simply about the dissipation of utopian energies into the void, or does the idealism it catalyzes spillover into and transform ordinary life?

(Reynolds 1999: 10)

As William Pickering published his second edition of Durkheim on Religion, he remarked upon the increased interest in the work of Emile Durkheim (Pickering 1994: 2). The observation remains accurate today, partly through growth in the popularity of the social anthropologist Victor Turner, prominent in a tradition of scholars adapting Durkheim's project. Regular contributors to journals like Durkheimian Studies and scholars publishing through the British Centre for Durkheimian Studies have launched reinterpretations of Durkheim's thought on various subjects, I and Turner's work has been recast, reformulated and extended by scholars of the sociology I anthropology of religion, ritual and other social phenomena, including pilgrimage, performance, education and tourism. 2 For my own part, in another work (Olaveson 2001) I demonstrate the equivalence of Durkheim's collective iffervescence and Turner's communitas, indicating that similar models of cultural creativity and revitalization underlay the work of both scholars, resembling more recent attempts to map new religious movements.