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In the Soviet Union, however, understanding is still sought to further the eradication of religion groin the social life of a socialist society, while at the same time its social scientists subscribe to the same methods as Western scholars and. like them, aspire to 'scientific objectivity'. Soviet sociologists are further hampered in their research by the dictates of the fairly rigid ideological and methodological framework given by Marxism-Leninism, which cannot easily be ignored. This restricts the number of questions raised in an inquiry.

Includes index. 1. Sociology, Christian-Russia. 2. Sects-Russia. I. 5'877-801 ISBN 0-87395-327-4 Page 7 For Julie and Christopher Page 9 Acknowledgements I am indebted to the SSRC, whose research grant made -this work possible, to Professor David Martin of the LSE, who read and advised me on several chapters, and to the staff at the Centre for the Study of Religion in Communist Society in Keston, Kent, who gave me full access to their extensive collection of samizdat (self-printed) and other sources on the subject of religion in the USSR.

His shortcomings, as Wilson (1959) has so succinctly stated, are the one-sided emphasis of this fact and the neglect of the internal dynamics of religious collectivities. Wilson's own work on sect development has clearly demonstrated that factors internal to the sect can either prevent or encourage movement towards a denominational position. Although Wilson's classification of sects according to their response to the world implies a consideration of both general societal factors and factors internal to the sect as relevant to change, his work in practice gives undue emphasis to the latter.

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