Massimo Introvigne

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Massimo Introvigne
head and shoulders photograph of a man
Born (1955-06-14) June 14, 1955 (age 66)
Rome
NationalityItalian
OccupationAuthor
Websitemassimointrovigne.com Edit this at Wikidata

Massimo Introvigne (born June 14, 1955, in Rome) is an Italian Roman Catholic[1] sociologist of religion[2] and intellectual property attorney.[3][4] He is a founder and the managing director of the Center for Studies on New Religions (CESNUR), a Turin-based organization which has been described as "the highest profile lobbying and information group for controversial religions".[5]

Life and work[edit]

Introvigne was born in Rome on June 14, 1955.[6][7] Introvigne earned a B.A. in Philosophy from Rome's Gregorian University in 1975, and in 1979 his Dr.Jur. from University of Turin.[8][3] He worked from the law firm Jacobacci e Associati as an intellectual property attorney, specialized in domain names.[4]

In 1972, he joined conservative Catholic group Alleanza Cattolica.[9][better source needed] From 2008 to 2016 he has served as vice-president of the group.[10]

In 1988 he co-founded the CESNUR and has since served as the group director.[11][12][13]

From January 5 to December 31, 2011, he served as “Representative on combating racism, xenophobia and discrimination, with a special focus on discrimination against Christians and members of other religions” of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).[14]

Beginning in 2012, Introvigne was listed as a "invited professor of sociology of religious movements" at the Salesian Pontifical University in Turin.[15][16]

In 2012, & until 2015, Introvigne was appointed chairperson of the newly instituted Observatory of Religious Liberty of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in order to monitor problems of religious liberty on a worldwide scale.[14][17]

Beginning in 2018, Introvigne was editor-in-chief of the daily magazine on religion and human rights in China, Bitter Winter, which is published by CESNUR.[18][19]

Introvigne is a proponent of the theory of religious economy developed by Rodney Stark.[20][21]

Introvigne and new religions[edit]

Swedish academic Per Faxneld, writing for Reading Religion, described Introvigne as "one of the major names in the study of new religions."[22] Sociologist Roberto Cipriani has called Introvigne "one of the Italian sociologists of religion most well-known abroad, and among the world's leading scholars of new religious movements".[23]

In 2001, sociologist Stephen A. Kent described Introvigne as a "persistent critic of any national attempts to identify or curtail so-called 'cults'",[5] arguing that,

"In the context, therefore, of the debate over Scientology in France and Germany, CESNUR is a think-tank and lobbying group, attempting to advance Scientology's legitimation goals by influencing European and American governmental policies toward it. It is not a neutral academic association, even less so because on its web page Introvigne intermingles ideological positions within solid research and information. On issues, however, that are key to the religious human rights debates — apostates, brainwashing, undue influence, compromised academic research, 'sect' membership and the potential for harm, critical information exchange on the Internet, etc. — he advocates doctrinaire positions that favour groups like Scientology."[5]

In the mid-1990s, Introvigne testified on behalf of Scientologists in a criminal trial in Lyon.[5]

After Introvigne was critical of the publication of the 1995 report on cults by the French government, journalists described Introvigne as a "cult apologist", saying he was tied to the Catholic Alliance and Silvio Berlusconi's then ruling party.[24] Introvigne responded that his scholarly and political activities were not connected.[25]

Introvigne has written on the concept of brainwashing. Gandow refers to what he calls the "APA-Lie" (i.e. the way Introvigne presented the position of the American Psychological Association on brainwashing) as a scientific scandal.[26] He published an Encyclopedia of Religion in Italy.[11]

Journalist and Scientology-critic Tony Ortega penned a series of 2018/19 articles criticizing The Journal of CESNUR as an unreliable "apologist journal".[27][28][29]

Popular Culture and Vampires[edit]

Introvigne is also director of CESPOC, the Center for the Study of Popular Culture.[30]

He was the Italian director of the Transylvanian Society of Dracula, which included the leading academic scholars in the field of the literary and historical study of the vampire myth.[31][32] In 1997, J. Gordon Melton and Introvigne organized an event at the Westin Hotel in Los Angeles where 1,500 attendees came dressed as vampires for: "creative writing contest, Gothic rock music and theatrical performances".[31]

Bibliography[edit]

Books[edit]

  • Le nuove Religioni, SugarCo (1989), ISBN 978-8871980904.
  • Il cappello del mago: i nuovi movimenti magici dallo spiritismo al satanismo, SugarCo (1990), ISBN 978-8871980218.
  • Il ritorno dello gnosticismo , SugarCo (1993), ISBN 88-7198-216-9.
  • Les Mormons, Brepols (December 30, 1996), ISBN 2-503-50063-3.
  • The Unification Church (Studies in Contemporary Religions, 2), Signature Books (September 1, 2000) ISBN 1-56085-145-7.
  • Rodney Stark and Massimo Introvigne, Dio è tornato. Indagine sulla rivincita delle religioni in Occidente, Piemme (2003), ISBN 978-8838465840.
  • Laurence R. Iannaccone and Massimo Introvigne, Il Mercato dei Martiri. L'industria del terrorismo suicida, Lindau (2004), ISBN 978-8871805146.
  • Satanism: A Social History, Brill (2016), ISBN 978-90-04-28828-7.
  • The Plymouth Brethren, Oxford University Press (2018), ISBN 9780190842420.
  • Il libro nero della persecuzione religiosa in Cina, SugarCo (2019), ISBN 978-88-7198-753-8.
  • Inside The Church of Almighty God: The Most Persecuted Religious Movement in China, Oxford University Press (2020), ISBN 978-0190089092

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Massimo Introvigne (March 20, 2021). "The Ghent Jehovah's Witness Decision: Dangerous for All Religions". Retrieved March 20, 2021. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  2. ^ Jason Horowitz, "A Clash of Worldviews as Pope Meets Putin", The New York Times, July 4, 2019.
  3. ^ a b "WIPO List of Neutrals, Biographical Data, Massimo Introvigne" (PDF). WIPO, World Intellectual Property Organization. n.d. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  4. ^ a b Olivero, Dario (August 7, 2003). "Cliccavi su Jagermeister trovavi un portale porno". La Repubblica. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d Kent, Stephen A. (January 2001). "The French and German versus American debate over 'new religions', Scientology and human rights". Marburg Journal of Religion. University of Marburg. 6 (1): 15. doi:10.17192/mjr.2001.6.3742.
  6. ^ "Sì alla famiglia, Massimo Introvigne parla di un'istituzione in pericolo". Modena Today. Modena, Italy. February 10, 2015. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  7. ^ "Massimo Introvigne: Fondamentalismo islamico: martiri o terroristi". Brundisium.net. Brindisi, Italy. November 30, 2005. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  8. ^ https://www.jacobacci-law.com/lawyers/Massimo-Introvigne
  9. ^ www.moreorless.net, moreorless -. "Massimo Introvigne, Twenty Years of CESNUR". www.cesnur.org. Retrieved November 3, 2017.
  10. ^ See "Massimo Introvigne non è più il reggente nazionale vicario di Alleanza Cattolica," La fede quotidiana, 28 April 2016, "Massimo Introvigne non è più il reggente nazionale vicario di Alleanza Cattolica". Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  11. ^ a b Stausberg, Michael (2009). "The study of religion(s) in Western Europe III: Further developments after World War II". Religion. 39 (3): 261–282. doi:10.1016/j.religion.2009.06.001. S2CID 144600043.
  12. ^ Arweck, Elizabeth (2006). Researching New Religious Movements: Responses and Redefinitions. London: Routledge. p. 28. ISBN 978-1138059887.
  13. ^ Liaisons Dangereuses Des Universités Lyonnaises , L'Humanité, June 27, 2001 by Serge Garde
  14. ^ a b "Editorial Board | Bitter Winter". October 5, 2018. Retrieved February 20, 2021.
  15. ^ http://torino.unisal.it/uni/index.php/docenti/docenti-invitati/item/123-massimo-introvigne Archived March 5, 2016, at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ Cocchi, Francesca (October 16, 2013). "Le sette religiose, viste da "dentro"". RSI Rete Uno. Lugano, Switzerland. Retrieved March 29, 2020.
  17. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on June 21, 2012. Retrieved June 20, 2012.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  18. ^ "Bitter Winter". Bitter Winter. Retrieved October 5, 2018.
  19. ^ https://www.lastampa.it/vatican-insider/it/2018/05/14/news/bitter-winter-in-italia-un-nuovo-quotidiano-online-su-religione-e-diritti-umani-in-cina-1.34016836
  20. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on February 15, 2009. Retrieved July 28, 2008.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  21. ^ Frank Bruni, "Faith Fades where It Once Burned Strong", The New York Times, October 13, 2003.
  22. ^ Per Faxneld, “Satanism: A Social History, Review”, Reading Religion, March 7, 2017.
  23. ^ Roberto Cipriani, Nuovo manuale di sociologia della religione, 2nd ed., Rome: Borla, 2009, p. 470
  24. ^ See for example Serge Faubert, "Le vrai visage des sectes", L'Evenement du jeudi, 4-10.11.1993, pp. 44-48; Bruno Fouchereau, "Les sectes, cheval de Troie des Etats-Unis en Europe," Le Monde Diplomatique, May 2001, 1. Susan Palmer, The New Heretics of France: Minority Religions, la Republique, and the Government-Sponsored "War on Sects", New York: Oxford University Press, 2011, ISBN 9780199735211.
  25. ^ See Massimo Introvigne, "CESNUR: a short history", In: Gallagher, Eugene V, (ed.), "Cult Wars" in Historical Perspective: New and Minority Religions. Routledge. pp. 23–31. ISBN 978-1-317-15666-6.
  26. ^ Thomas Gandow: Die APA-Lüge – ein Wissenschaftsskandal (german), Berliner Dialog 1–98, 1998, p.27
  27. ^ https://tonyortega.org/2019/06/19/ignore-the-apologists-yes-l-ron-hubbard-lied-about-having-an-engineering-degree/
  28. ^ https://tonyortega.org/2018/04/11/a-new-academic-book-takes-apart-scientology-and-pop-culture-and-the-apologists-hate-it/
  29. ^ https://tonyortega.org/2019/06/21/scientology-founder-l-ron-hubbard-provost-marshal-another-apologist-claim-debunked/
  30. ^ www.moreorless.net, moreorless -. "CESPOC - Center for Studies on Popular Culture - Centro Studi sulla Popular Culture". www.popularculture.it (in Italian). Retrieved October 5, 2018.
  31. ^ a b "Coffin Break To Vampires Everywhere, Fangs For The Memories", The Los Angeles Daily News – July 23, 1997. Carol Bidwell.
  32. ^ The Board of the Transylvanian Society of Dracula, American Chapter.

External links[edit]