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Eliade, Mircea (1907–1986)

Mircea Eliade was one of the founders of the modern academic field of history of religions and was a pillar of the University of Chicago's school of comparative religious studies from 1958 to 1986. Eliade was a prodigious Romanian novelist who survived World War II as an exiled fascist cultural attaché before becoming the most influential founder of religious studies in the United States.

As an attempt to bridge East and West and archaic and modern, Eliade's scholarship encourages cultural dialogue and a respect for the power of symbols and history. His critics allege that generalizations about ethnic and religious communities for the sake of comparison minimize the important roles that conflicts and politics play in religion. His support for fascism in Europe before World War ...

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