International Journal of Coercion, Abuse, and Manipulation (IJCAM)

Vo. 2, pp. 3-26 (2021). First Published, November 10, 2021. DOI:

Introduction to the IJCAM Special Edition: Comparative Reflections on

Scientology And NXIVM

Stephen A. Kent


This special issue of the International Journal of Coercion, Abuse, and Manipulation is dedicated to articles about Scientology and NXIVM, so it offers an opportunity to present evidence, in an academic setting, about Scientology’s possible influence on Keith Raniere (b. 1960) and the organization that he founded. I provide, therefore, a summary of comments that former members and critics of both groups have made about the (alleged) Scientology influence on NXIVM, and I conclude with my own interpretations of why some apparent similarities exist between the two groups and their creators. I realize that my comments are only preliminary (pending the discovery of new information), and I identify some lacuna in both evidence and interpretation that further researchers may want to pursue.