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Raluca Bianca Roman

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Location: St Andrews

Institution: University of St Andrews

Contact: E-Mail

I am currently a PhD student in Social Anthropology at University of St Andrews.

My PhD deals with the religious belonging to Pentecostalism among one of Finland’s traditional minorities, the Finnish Kaale (Finnish Roma). My research aim is to understand how, given their social status of a marginal minority within modern day Finnish society, specific understandings of religious transcendence, belonging and individual salvation are translated into the everyday experiences of Kaale believers, their relations with non-converted kin and the relations they establish with non-Kaale members of their respective religious communities. I explore how experiences of conversion within Evangelical churches and religious socialisation within the family and church settings shape and are shaped by the importance placed on kinship ties, customs, purity rituals and cultural distinctiveness among the Kaale. Informed by cultural phenomenology and anthropological studies of Christianity, my research is an ethnography of Pentecostal belonging among what is considered to be a traditional minority in Finland, looking at ways in which specific religious beliefs contribute in shaping specific understandings of personhood, kinship, community, as well as shaping practices of inclusion/exclusion from one' immediate kin groups.