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  • Writer's pictureDale V Wayman, PhD

Deconversion Revisited

This is the rough draft of a requested book review that has been submitted to the Religious Studies Review. Once, it has been edited and published, I will be placing the URL for the final publication here. DECONVERSION REVISITED: BIOGRAPHICAL STUDIES AND PSYCHO-METRIC ANALYSES TEN YEARS LATER by Heinz Streib, Barbara Keller, Ramona Bullik, Anika Steppacher, Christopher F. Silver, Matthew Durham, Sally B. Barker, and Ralph W. Hood, Jr., Göttingen, Germany, Vandenhoeck and Reprecht, 2022. Pp.304, Hardback, $115.00.

The burgeoning field of research on understanding religious deconversion has a great 10-year follow-up with this mixed-methods study.  This highly academic tome is quite complex, well-documented, and multifaceted. For example, in just in one part of this second wave study, a longitudinal approach (n=45) from mostly German (82.2%) Protestants (54.5%) and Roman Catholics (23.7%) as well as (10.5%) other and (18.4%) none through the use of The Faith Development Interview with almost equal males and females, found that there were no further deconversions 10-years later. However, there were decreases in the “more religious than spiritual” and the “more spiritual than religious” categories. Also, increases in the “equally religious and spiritual” and the “neither religious nor spiritual” categories were reported. There are many more findings in this study that are for those interested in the study of deconversion and how it is reflected in psychological well-being, faith development and how people cope with disengaging from their religious tradition. The authors are positioning themselves for a third-wave study, which will provide even more longitudinal findings.

            Dale V Wayman

            Capella University

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