Social Constructionist Substantive definition:Definition •Focus – content/substance of religious belief•Interpertivist approach – focus (belief in God - supernatural).how people themselves define •Weber – belief in a superior/supernatural abovereligion – believe its impossible nature, cant be explained scientifically.to find single definition of all •No room for religions that dont believe in God.religions. (accused western biased – dont include•Interested in how definitions Buddhism)are constructed, challenged andfought over.•Aldridge – shows scientologyfor its followers is a religion –can define it, feel passionatelyabout it. WHAT IS•Inclusive RELIGION•Makes it impossible to Functional Definitiongeneralize about the nature ofreligion – people have verydifferent views about religion. •Focus – social or psychological functions it performs. •Durkheim – define in terms of the contributions it makes to social integration rather than belief in god/supernatural. •Yinger – looks at functions it performs for individual – answering ‘ultimate question’. •Adv: inclusive (allows range of beliefs/practices, no biased against non western religions that dont believe in god)
-Durkheim on Religion Criticisms •See society as system –religion – creates + maintains value •D theory may be better applied to interrelated parts, value consensus consensus, order and solidarity. Cognitive functions small scale societies, harder to makes social order possible. An •D – source of our apply it to larger societies were 2 or organism with basic needs it must cognitive capacities. more religions may be in conflict. meet in order to survive – met by-Sacred and Profane •To share thoughts we •Mestrovic – ideas cant be applied different institutions. need to use same to contemporary society – •Basic need: social order/solidarity category as others. increased diversity has fragmented so that its members cooperate.Set apart and Things with •Religion is the origin of collective consciousness – noforbidden, no special concepts. longer single shared value systeminspire feelings of significance, for religion to reinforceawe, fear, ordinary. postmodernism.wonder. Parsons: Values & Meaning •Religion helps ppl cope with unfortunate•R involves rituals/practices in relation to the events.sacred – collective (performed by groups) •Creates – legitimise societies central values•When people worship sacred symbols they (making them sacred)worship society itself. •Primary source of meaning – answers the•Sacred symbols unites people from all religions – Functionalist ultimate question. If life meaningless mightas perform the essential function of uniting undermine our commitment to societies values.believers into single moral community.-Totemism•D believes essence of all religions could be found Psychological functions Civil religionby studying its simplest form - clan society. •Malinowski helps people cope with emotional Bellah – how religion integrates socially in a•Used study Australian aboriginals , involved clans stress that would undermine social solidarity. way individual religion cannot. American civilof kin coming together periodically to perform •Lagoon fishing – safe/predictable– no ritual religion involves loyalty to the nation state &rituals involving worship of a sacred totem. (clans needed belief in god, both equated with beingemblem e.g. Animal or plant that symbolises the •Ocean fishing – dangerous/uncertain – ritual American.clans origins + identity. Totem rituals needed. •Gives people sense of control, eases tension Evaluation gives confidence – reinforce group solidarity.The collective consciousness Too much emphasis on social nature of religion •Death/birth /puberty/marriage = major•D - sacred symbols rep collective consciousness & positive functions it performs – neglects changes in social groups – religion helps– shared norms/values. negative aspects – e.g. Religion as source of minimise disruption. E.g. Funerals reinforce•Rituals binds individuals together – part of a oppression poor/women. feeling of solidarity amongst survivors. (deathsingle community, makes us feel part of Ignores religion as a source of division/conflict – main reason).something greater than ourselves - motivates us where theres religious pluralism – hard to seeto overcome obstacles which would otherwise how it can untie people and promotedefeat us. integration.
Religion & Alienation Woodhead : Religious Feminism•Under capitalism workers alienated - dont own what they produce, no •Woodhead – not true of all religions, women use religion to gaincontrol over production process, no freedom to express true nature as freedom and respect (Hijab – education/work) - symbol ofcreative beings. liberation allows them to enter the public sphere without loosing•Religion = Opiate to dull pain of exploitation. culture/History.•Religion acts as an ideology – legitimises the suffering of the poor +privileges of ruling class. •Evangelical belief that men should respect women can tell •Sees society as divided into them to practice what they preach. 2 classes – one which •Church of England permits women priests. (1/5) exploits the labour of the other, capitalist class owns See society as the means of production. patriarchal – religion Marxist •Always potential for class acts as a patriarchal conflict, Marx predicts WC Feminism ideology that legitimises would ultimately become female subordination. conscious of their exploitation + unite to overthrow capitalism.Religion as a ideology Evidence of patriarchy •Marxist see religion as a•A belief system, distorts reality feature of a class divided •Mainly men in religious organisations – despite fact women participateto serve interests of capitalist society – no need for religion more. E.g. Catholicism forbid women priests.class. in a classless society. •Places of worship – segregated , men taking central seating women•Argues class controls economic NOT. Participation restricted (unclean, preg, menstr)production + production + •In sacred texts, women mainly doings of men. Stories reflect anti-femaledistribution of ideas in society Evaluation stereotypes e.g. Eve.through church, education, •Ignores positive functions of religion e.g. •Religious laws given women fewer rights than men, divorce, marriage,media. Psychological adjustment to misfortune. decision making, dress code. Religious influence of cultural norms may•Marx sees religion as ideological •Neo-Marxist see certain forms of religion also lead to unequal treatment e.g. Genital mutilation/punishment forweapon used by the ruling class assisting development of class sexual transgression, reproductive role, catholic no contraception.to legitimate the suffering of thepoor as something inevitable and consciousness.god given. •Althusser rejects concept of alienation as •Karen Armstrong Nawal el Saadawi argues,•Misleads them – think suffering unscientific & based on romantic idea that argues that early religions not direct causeis virtuous and that they would human being have a ‘true-self’. religions placed women of their subordination,be favoured in the afterlife. E.g. •Religion doesnt function effectively as at centre – e.g. Earth rather its the patriarchalCamel ting ideology to control the population e.g. mother goddesses, forms of society coming•This Creates false consciousness Abercrombie & Turner argue – pre- fertility cults and female in existence, men– prevents poor from rebelling. capitalist society – while Christianity was a priests found in middle reinterpreted religious•Lenln – describes ‘spiritual gin’ major element of ruling class ideology had east until 6,000 years beliefs in ways thatconfusing them & keeping them limited impact on peasantry. ago. favoured patriarchy.in their place.
Calvinist Beliefs Predestination: God predeterminedReligions conservative Beliefs which souls would be saved before•Many have conservative beliefs bout moral even birth – ppl cant do anythingissues – oppose change (e.g. Freedom in about this.personal/sexual matters – Divine transcendence: no humanCatholics, divorce, abortion, contraception, g could claim to know gods will (otherays) than bible) making them fell lonely –•Most uphold family values – favouring when combined with predestination –traditional patriarchal domestic division. (e.g. creates ‘salvation panic’.Church of England, man – head of family Asceticism: refraining from luxury,..love, honour, obey, Hinduism – endorse wearing simple clothes avoidingmale domestic authority & arranged excess to devote o God and life ofmarriages. prayer.Religions Conservative Functions Idea of vocation calling: bible•Contributes to social stability revealed to them we put on the earth•Religion & consensus functionalist see to glorify gods name by our work. Forreligion as a conservative force functions to Calvinists idea of vocation meantmaintain social stability – prevents constant, methodical work indisintegration. Religion & Social occupation – not a monastery.•promotes social solidarity – value however., work cant earn salvation –consensus, reduces likelihood society will Change simply a religious duty.collapse by individuals perusing own selfish For this reason they led asceticinterests. lifestyle, worked long hours and•Contrast Marxist & Feminists see it as an Hinduism & Confucianism Evaluation practiced self discipline this had 2ideology – supports existing social structures •Weber argued Calvinists was •Disagrees with Marx , saying consequences:– acts as means for social control, creating one of many causes of material/economic factors not 1. Wealth/success performedstability in interest of the powerful – modern capitalism (natural enough to bring capitalism. psychological function allowedmaintaining status quo by preventing less resources, trade, a money •Specific cultural factors needed them to cope with salvationpowerful from changing things. economy, towns, cities, (values of Calvinism) panic. As grew wealthier – took system of law..needed) •Kautsky argues Weber over this as sign of gods favour & theirReligion & Capitalism •Notes – other societies had estimates role of ideas – salvation (why else would they•Marx – conservative ideology – prevents higher level of economic underestimates economic factors. have prospered) this is contrarysocial change by legitimising/ disguising development 16-17 th Cent, •Tawney argues technological change to original doctrine – Gods willexploitation & inequality – creating false but still failed to develop not religion caused C. unknowable.consciousness in WC – prevents revolution. Capitalism. •C didnt develop in every place 2. Driven by work ethic – •Ancient China & India where was Calvinists (Scotland e.g.) accumulated wealth. NotReligion & Patriarchy materially more advance than Marshall – was lack of investment squander in luxuries – reinvested•Feminist see religion as conservative force – Europe – capitalism failed – capital & skilled labour(support Web in businesses – grew prospered =acts as an ideology that legitimises patriarchal lack of religious belief. material + cultural factors needed) more profit to reinvest.
Religion & Social Protest Millenarian Movements Marxism, Religion & Change.•Bruce interested in this relationship, compared 2 •Important example of desire •Engles: Religion can have a duale.g. Of role of religiosity inspired protest to change things. character, can be a force for change asmovements in America – aimed to change society. •Appeal is largely to the poor – well as stability.•To achieve success, the beliefs and demands of promises immediate •Marx sees religion as capable ofreligion – mot prot, have to b consistent Wider improvements. humanising a world made inhuman bysociety. exploitation – even if comfort offered is Religion & Social illusionary. •Although inhibits change by disguising change (Protest) inequality – challenge the status quo and encourage social change e.g. Religion sometimes preaches liberationAmerican Civil Rights New Christian Right form slavery/misery.Movement •Politically, morally Gramsci: Religion & •Lower ranks within church hierarchy•1950/60’s – to end racial conservative, protestant Hegemony support/inspired organised popularsegregation, blacks denied legal fundamentalist movement. Gramsci – uses word Hegemony to protest.& political rights in southern •Was against liberalisation of describe how ruling class use ideas •Bloch – religion is an expression of thestates segregation enforced on America. such as religion to maintain control. ‘principle of hope’ - dreams of betterbuses, schools, toilets. •Aim – take US ‘back to God’ Counter-hegemony could occur world utopia.•Civil rights movement began making (alternative way of living) •This image might deceive a person withwhen Rosa Parks refused to sit abortion, homos, divorce = He also sees religion as having dual promises of rewards in heaven –at back of bus – protest Illegal. character. although might also help people to seemarches, boycotts, •Believe in traditional Some clergy may act as organic what needs to be changed in this world.demonstrations. family/roles – ban sex ed. at intellects. •This combined with effective political•Bruce describes black clergy as school. organisations/leadership – bring aboutbackbone of movement – led •Made use of Televangelism. social change.by Martin Luther King – •Unsuccessful in achieving itschurches provided meeting aims.places/sanctuary from threat of •As campaigners found hardwhite violence. to cooperate with people from Liberation theology•They shamed whites to change other religious groups. •Movement that emerged within Catholic church in Latin America.law by appealing to their •US hold very liberal •Strong commitment to the poor & opposition to military dictatorship.shared Christian values of democratic values – difficult to •Latin America had been conservative – encouraging a fatalistic acceptance ofequality – gained national change. poverty + supporting wealthy elites and military dictatorship.support. •Surveys showed Americans •Priests helped peasants to fight oppression under the protection of the•Proved hypocrisy – ‘love thy happy to legalise activities church.neighbour’. they found immoral (abortion) •Otto Manduro – religion can bring about change e.g. liberation theology uses•Movement achieved its aims – and their unwilling to accept religious ideas radicalised the catholic clergy in defence of peasants – makingshared same values as wider other peoples definition of them see that serving the poor was part of their Christian duty.society & those in power. how they should live.
Explanations: Religious institutions today•Modernisation – decline of •Influence of religion as social institution has declined. Secularisation in Britaintraditional thoughts more •Although church has some influence on public life. •Crockett estimates that in 1851 40% or morerationale scientific ways of (e.g. church of England bishops have influence on adults in Britain attended church on Sundays.thinking now. (undermine legislations) •Now threes been:religion) •There are still faith schools, although state funded•Industrialisation: break up of and must conform to state regulations (national •Decline in proportion of population going tosmall communities that were curriculum) churchheld together by common •One measure of institutional weakness of the church •Increase in the average age of churchgoersreligious beliefs. is number of clergy which fell dramatically – time •Fewer baptises and church weddings.•Growth of social and religious when population doubled in size. •Decline in number holding traditional Christiandiversity – undermined the beliefsauthority of religious institutions •Greater religious diversity, including more non-and credibility of religious Christian religions.beliefs. Wilson: in western societies their going through a process of secularisation. Secularisation Max Weber: Rationalisation •Rational ways of thinking replace religious ones. Church attendance today •Protestant reformation 16th c. began •Only 6.3% of adult population attend church on by Martin Luther started this. Sundays. •For Weber, medieval catholic •Sunday school attendance has declined further. worldview saw the world as an •Church weddings and Baptists remain more ‘enchanted garden’ god and other popular than attendance on Sunday. Disenchantment spiritual beings present and changing •Webers view: protestant their events by supernatural powers. reformation begins the ‘disenchantment’ of the world – Religious beliefs today squeezes out magical/religious •Opinion polls and attitude surveys show: Technological worldview ways of thinking & start the •More people claim they hold Christian beliefs •Bruce argues growth in it has rationalisation process leads to than actually belong/ go to church. replace religious views. the dominance of the rational •Religious belief declining in line with the decline •Technological worldview leaves mode of thought. of church attendance & membership. little room for religious •Enables science to thrive and •Gill et al – national survey: explanations in everyday life – provide the basis for technological •Significant decline in belief in a person god + in which only survives in areas were advances – give humans more and traditional teachings about afterlife. technology is less effective – pray more power to control nature. for help when sick – no scientific cure. doesnt make people atheist.
Social and Cultural Diversity Religious Diversity•Move from pre-industrial society = decline •Berger – cause of secularisation is Diversity –in community – contributes to decline of Criticisms instead of one religion – many.religion. •Aldridge points out community doesnt have to •Middle ages – catholic church held monopoly – no be in a particular area:•Wilson – pre industrial communities – competition – gave religion greater plausibility as •Religion can be a source of identity onshared values expressed through collective worldview scale: Jews, Hindus, Muslims. no challenges – churches version of the truth –religious rituals, regulated behaviour of • some religious communities are imagined unquestionable.individuals. communities that interact through the use of •Changed with Protestant Reformation.•Bruce also sees industrialisation as global media. •Berger – creates crisis of credibility.undermining the consensus of religious •when theres alternative versions to choose from –beliefs that hold small rural communities people question all of them.together. •Whats true/false becomes a personal point of•Social/geographic mobility breaks up view – creates possibility of opting out of religion allcommunities – also brings ppl together from together.many different backgrounds – diversity.•Diversity undermines religion – even whenppl hold religious beliefs – cant avoid Secularisationknowing that many around then hold Cultural Defence & Transitiondifferent views – beliefs is undermined by •Bruce identifies 2 counter-trends that goalternatives. against secularisation – both associated with higher than average levels of religious participation.Structural differentiation •Cultural Defence: religion is focal point for•Palcott describes this as a process of specialisation that occurs with the Criticisms the defence of national, ethnic, local ordevelopment of industrial society – separate specialised institutions develop to •Berger – changed his group identity in a struggle against externalcarry out functions that were previously performed by a single institution. views, argues that force e.g. Hostile foreign power (popularity•Parsons sees this having happened to religion – dominated preindustrial society – diversity and choice of Poland before fall of Communism,with industrialisation it has become a small and more specialised institution. stimulates interest and resurgence of Islam before the Revolution in•Parsons says structural differentiation leads to the disintegration of religion – participation in religion Iran)functions transferred to other institutions such as state it becomes disconnected e.g. Growth of New •Culturaltransition: religion providesfrom wider society. Christian Right in USA support and sense of community for ethnic points to the continuing•Bruce agrees that religion has become separate from wider society and lost many groups e.g. Migrants. (Irish, African, vitality of religion notof its former functions. Caribbean, Muslim n other migrants to UK) decline.•Religious beliefs are now largely a matter of personal choice & religious •Beckford – opposing •Bruce: religion only survives in suchinstitutions have lost influence over society. views could strengthen a situations –group identity. Shows religion•Traditional rituals and symbols have lost their meaning. religious groups more likely to survive were it performs•Even when religion continues to perform functions such as education/social commitment than functions other than relating the individualwelfare – must conform to requirements of secular state e.g. Teachers at faith undermining it. to the supernatural.schools must hold qualifications that are recognised by the state at the same time, •Religion loses importance for migrantsmodern states accept that religion is a personal choice and hence the state once they have integrated into society.shouldnt be identified with one particular faith.
Spiritual Revolution•Traditional Christianity is giving way to ‘hostilic Secularisation in America Bruce:Spirituality’ - new age beliefs and practices that Declining church attendance •Wilson found in 1962 that 45% ofemphasise personal development and Americans attended church on •Research asking people about churchsubjective experience. attendance suggests its stable for 40% of Sundays.•Increased interest in spirituality – seen in population since 1940. •Argues that church attendance wasgrowth of spiritual market – more an expression of the •Hadaway – said if figures were correct thenbooks/therapies/meditation/crystal healing. churches would be full – they were not full. ‘Americans way of life’ than of deeply held religious beliefs – it had •He says opinion polls exaggerated.•In their study of Kendal in Cumbria – Heelas & •Hadaway et al studied attendance rates in become superficial.Woodhead investigate whether traditional OHIO – using interviews – carried out headreligion has declined and how far the growth of counts – level of attendance claimed byspirituality is compensating for this: interviews was 83% - higher than the•The congregational Domain: of estimate.traditional/Evangelical Christianity. •Evidence shows tendency to exaggerate•The Hostilic Milieu: of Spirituality and the New churchgoing is recent development.Age. Secularisation •Concludes there’s a stable decline in•Found: 7.9% of population attended church attendance rate. People lie about attendingand 1.6% took part in activities of hostilic milieu. as its socially desirable to go to church.•Within the congregation domain – thetraditional churches were loosing support –while evangelical churches were holding their Secularisation form within Criticisms of Secularisation Theoryown and fairly relatively well. •Bruce : religion has been turned •Religion not declining but simply changing its form.•Hostilic milieu – growing. into a form of therapy. •Secularisation theory is one-sided focuses on decline •Thus change has enabled it to fit in and ignores religious rivals and growth of new Religions.Heelas & Woodhead Explanations with a secular society. •Evidence of falling church attendance ignores peopleNew age spirituality grown – a massive •American religion has remained who believe bit do not go to church.subjective turn in todays culture. Involves shift popular but become less religious. •Religion might have declined in Europe but not inaway from ding your duty and obeying external •Purpose of religion has changed America or globally – secularisation not universal.authority – to exploring your inner self by from seeking salvation in Heaven to •Religious diversity increases participation because itfollowing a spiritual path. seeking personal improvement in offers choice.Traditional religions as a result are declining. this world. •There is no overall downward trend, religions tends toEvangelical churches more successful as they pointing in different directions and people make use ofemphasis the importance of spiritual healing religion in many different ways.and personal growth through the experience of Religious Diversitybeing born again. •Led to secularisation. •Bruce identifies a trend towards practical relativism among Americans – acceptance of the view that others are entitled to hold beliefs that are different to ones own. •Lynd & Lynd (1929) study found that 94% churchgoing young people agreed : ‘Christianity is one true religion & all people should convert to it’ in 1977 only 41% agreed.
Post modernity & Religion Spiritual Shopping•Some sociologists reject that secularisation •Hervieu – fewer parents teach children about religion – let them decide forthesis that religion must inevitably decline in themselves.modern society – religion is changing rather •Although religion has not disappeared – individual consumerism has replacedthan declining. collective tradition – spiritual shopping. •She argues 2 new religions are emerging: •Pilgrims: follow individual path in search for self-discovery.Believing Without Belonging •Converts: join religious groups that offer a strong sense of belonging. Usually based•Grace Davie – religion not declining but on shared ethnic backgroundtaking a different more privatised form. E.g.Not going to church because they have to/ Lyon: ‘Jesus in Disneyland’churchgoing declined as result of personal •Agrees with Davie that believing without belongingchoice – rather than obligation = peoplebelieve but dont belong. Religion, is increasing. •Traditional belief giving way to a variety of newVicarious religion Renewal & religions.•Small number of professional clergy Change– practice religion on behalf of a The relocation of religionmuch larger number of people (exp •Globalisation – allows different religions to be advertised via media – giving people ideas and2nd hand). beliefs of other religions.•Typical pattern in Britain and •Media lifts them out of their original context –Northern Europe. moving them to different place/time e.g. Electronic•Despite low level of attendance – Religious Consumerism •Postmodern society also involves church – televangelism dissembled religion frommany people still use church for rites real local churches to internet – allowing believers the growth of consumerism – esp.of passage (baptising, weddings, the idea that we construct our to express their faith without physically attendingfunerals) identities through what we choose church.•Bibby : 25% Canadians go to church, to consume.80% said they had religious beliefs. •People have become ‘religious Criticisms•Davie sees this as evidence for consumers’ making conscious •Postmodernist claim that growth of religious mediabelieving but not belonging. choices about what elements of is evidence against secularisation – research shows religion they find useful. people choose to view programmes that confirm their existing beliefs – unlikely that religious mediaCriticisms attracts new converts.•Vaos & Crocket – evidence shows Re-enchantment of the World •Lyon criticises evidence uses – however his ideasdecline in church attendance and belief •Contrary to Webers prediction of increasing are not based on extensive evidence.in God. rationalism, Lyon sees last ¾ decades as – re- •Bruce sees consumerist religion as weak – little•Bruce: if people r not willing to invest enchantment – with growth of unconventional effect on lives – he sees this as evidence FORtime in going to church – reflects the beliefs/practices. secularisation.declining strength of the belief.
Religious Market Theory America Vs Europe•Stark & Bainbridge – v. Critical of S theory – see it •Demand for religion increases when there Supply Led Religionas Eurocentric (explains decline in Europe – fails to is variety to choose from/ Hadden&Shupeargue that growth ofexplain continuing vitality in America/ elsewhere). •Where theres religious monopoly = decline, no ‘televangelism’ in USA shows that level of•They put forward market theory – based on 2 competition church has no incentive to provide religious participation is supply led.assumptions: ppl what they want. Stark – Japan is another society where a free•People r naturally religious & religion meets •S & B – religion thrives in US – no religious market in religion has stimulated participation.human needs – overall demand for religion monopoly.remains constant. •Different in Europe: most European countries – Criticisms•Its human nature to seek rewards and avoid dominated by an official state church which has •Evidence shows that diversity has beencosts. religious monopoly e.g. Church of England – lack accompanied by religious decline.•When people make choices they weight up the of choice - decline. •Norris & Inglehart – high levels of religiouscosts and benefits of the different options •They conclude – participation increases when participation exist in catholic monopoly countriesavailable. theres choice – declines when supply is like Ireland & Venezuela. – by contrast countries restricted. with religious pluralism e.g. Holland/Australia•Religion is attractive – it provides us with often have low levels of participation.compensators when real ones are scarce – religioncompensates by promising supernatural ones. Religion, Renew•e.g. Immortality is unobtainable – but religioncompensates by promising life after death – only al & Changereligion can provide this – non religious ideologies State welfare & religiositysuch as communism do not provide credible •Lundengaarde found that the more a countrycompensators – they dont promise supernatural Existential Security Theory spends on welfare the lower levels of religiousrewards. Norris & Inglehart participation. Religion meets a need for security – •Europe spend allot on welfare = more secular•Alternative they put forward is – cycle of religious societies where people feel secure than USA.decline, revival and renewal - some religions have a low level of demand fordecline, but some grow and attract new members, religion.secularisation is one-sided and only sees decline. Evaluation •Vasquez makes 2 criticisms:•They see churches as companies selling goods in Poor societies: where Rich societies: people •Only use quantitative data about income people face life have high standard ofa market – secularisation sees competition as levels – dont examine peoples own definitions threatening risks = high living & r at less risk –undermining religion – she argues competition levels of insecurity, have greater sense of of ‘existential security’ – argues qualitativeleads to improvement in quality of religious goods. poor ppl in rich security – hence data also needed.•Churches that make their products attractive will societies also face lower levels of •They only see religion as negative response to greater insecurity. religiosity. deprivation – ignore positive reasons peopleattract more customers – meanwhile churchesthat are not responsive to the needs of their have for religious participation. This varies between societies – explains whymember will decline. poor 3rd world countries remain religious while prosperous cities have become more secular.
God & Globalisation inIndia Capitalism in East Asia Hindu Ultra-nationalism •South Korea, Singapore and Taiwan –•Globalisation – bought rapid •Nada examines role of Hinduism in legitimating a recent years industrialised – players ineconomic growth. triumphant version of Indian Nationalism. global economy.•Bought rising prosperity to •Survey found 93% agreed that ‘our people are not •China major industrial power.some of Indias new middle class. perfect, but our culture is superior to others.’ •Redding describes the spirit of•Nanda’s book examines role of •She notes that Indian success contributed to capitalism among ChineseHinduism (85% population) in superiority of Hindus values. entrepreneurs –sees their post-legitimating both the rise of a •Hindu ultra nationalism – worshiping Hindu gods – Confucian values as encouraging hardnew Hindu ‘ultra – nationalism’ become same as worshiping nation of India work/self- discipline to education & self-& prosperity of Indian middle improvement.class. •Effect of this – leads to economic productivity & accumulation of capital.Hinduism & Consumerism •Similar to Calvinists.•Globalisation – created urban MC working– IT, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology – tie Religion &with the global economy – the 1st whomsecularisation theory predicts will abandon Development Pentecostalism: Global &religion in favour of secular worldview. Local•Nanda – found (survey) they believe in •Christianity – globalised & spreadsupernatural – Indian’s becoming more worldwide.religious. Pentecostalism in Latin America •Lehmann – 1st phase: Christianity•Urban educated Indians more religious •Berger argues it acts same as Webers accompanied colonisation – oftenthan rural illiterate counterparts. Protestant Ethic. enforced by conquest.•Could b because increase in religious •Like Calvinists, Pentecostalism demands •2ns phase: gained popular followingtourism – visits to shrine/temple – ascetic life, emphasised self-discipline, from bellow (Brazil, 80mil)fashionable to be religious. hard work, abstinence from alcohol.•She rejects view that poverty is explanation •Chile/Brazil now growing, prosperous •Lehmann attributes success offor their religion – their not poor. Pentecostal MC – leading capitalist Pentecostalism - ability to ‘plug-in’•Nanda – increasing religiosity result of their development. and incorporate local ideas.ambivalence about new found wealth. •Berger underlines that religious ideas •Attract cults such as spirit•Due to tension between the traditional alone – not enough to produce economic possession cults, as work of theHindu belief in Renunciation of development – natural resources also devil, but their ministers conductmaterialism/worldly desirers & new needed. exorcisms to rid people of evil spiritsprosperity of MC. •E.g. North Brazil – lacks resources & – accept its existence – validates•Resolved by modern holy men – telegurus remains backwards –South Brazil – local traditional beliefs.– preach message that desires not bad. developing rapidly – natural resources & work ethnic derived from Pentecostalism.
Religious Fundamentalism Cultural Defence: Monotheism & Fundamentalism •Where religion serves to unit a•Has emerged as major area of media and community against an external •Bruce – regards fundamentalism as being confined topolitical concern – international Islamic threat – religion symbolised monotheistic religions.terrorists Term ‘fundamentalist’ also been groups collective identity. •Because – monotheistic religions are based on a notion ofapplied to followers of other religions including •Iran & Poland examples of how god revealed through a single authoritative sacred text.protestant Christians. religion used in defence of national identity- face of In Bruces view – 2 fundamentalisms political domination by external •In west – F often reaction to change within society, e.g.Fundamentalism & Cosmopolitanism powers. New Christian Right. Aims to reassert true religion – restore•Giddens – their traditionalist seek to return to it to public role were it can shape laws & morals of widerthe basics of their faith. society.•Intolerant – refuse to dialogue with others – •In 3rd world: reaction to change on society fromjustify their views by reference to sacred texts Religion & outside, e.g. Iranian revolution. Triggered by modernisationrather than rational arguments. Development in which western values imposed by foreign capitalism.•Tend to avoid contact with others who thinkdifferently. Criticisms Poland Iran•He sees growth of it as product of globalisation •Jackson- sees his work •Under communist rule – USSR •Western Capitalist held(undermine social norms concerning nuclear as e.g. Of orientalism – Real clash of •Catholic church suppressed – 4 influence, inc. overthrow offamily abortion ext) western ideology that civilisations many poles still embodied democratic government to stereotypes eastern •Inglehart &Norris – national identity. install pro-western regime.•Attraction to it is the certainty it promises in an •After communism fell – church •Ayatollah – imposed Islamic law nations & ppl (esp. issue dividing westuncertain world. from Muslim world is regained public role. on the country – bring back veil. Muslims) as•He contrast this with cosmopolitanism (way of untrustworthy, inferior. sexuality.thinking that embraces modernity in keeping •Difference in views •Armstrong – hostile Religion & ‘clash of Civilisations’todays globalised world) about divorce, gay towards west – not from•C – tolerant of views of others – open to new rights, abortion. •Religion been centre of conflicts – 9/11 Islamic attack – F in Islam – reaction to •Muslim valuesideas. bombings in Madrid, Bali, London. western foreign policy- remain traditional.•Use rational arguments not ref to sacred texts. e.g. West continue to •Neo-conservative Huntington – such conflicts got worse•Persons life = personal choice not ascribed by support Israel despite since collapse of communism.external religions. treatment of Palestines. •Religious differences become major source of identity for 2 reasons: •Globalisation makes contact between civilisations easier Response to post modernity and more frequency – increased likelihood of old conflicts Criticisms •Bauman sees fundamentalism also as re-emerging. •Beckford – this distinguishes too response to living in post modernity. •Fall of communism – political differences between sharply between C and F- ignoring •PM – brings freedom of choice, nations less important as source of identity. hybrid movements. uncertainty, heightened awareness of •His view – religious differences cause hostile •Fixated on F – ignoring other important risk – undermining old certainties relationships for economic & military power. developments – how G affected about how to live. •Conflict also occurring boundaries between civilisations – Catholicism. •Some attracted to it – some NOT – •Giddens lumps all types of F together, Yugoslavia. attracted to fundamentalism - claims ignoring important differences between •Religious differences harder than political to resolve as of absolute truth & certainty. them. there’re deeply rooted in culture & history.
Types of religious organisations New religious MovementsTroelstch distinguished between 2 types of religious organisations. •Since 1960 – exposition on no. of new religious organisations – led to attempts to classify them.Churches Sects From Cathedrals to Cults •Wallis categorised new religious movements into 3•Large organisation – •Small – exclusive groups Some argue these descriptions groups, based on relationship to outside world –millions of members. •Unlike churches sects don’t fit todays reality. E.g. whether it rejects it, accommodates to it – or affirm•Run by bureaucratic are hostile to wider Bruce argues only catholic it.hierarchy of professional society church claims monopoly beforepriests. •Expect higher level of 16th century protestant•Claim monopoly of commitment reformation. World Rejecting NRM’Struth. •Draw members from Since sects/cults = flourished •Similar to sects e.g. children of god, Manson•Universalistic – aim to poor, oppressed. and religious diversity is the family – vary in size.include whole society – •Led by charismatic norm. •Religious organisation with clear notion of god.more attracted to higher leaders •Highly critical of outside world – expect/seekclasses – ideologically •Only similarity: believe radical change.conservative & closely they have monopoly oflinked to state. religious truth. Organisation, •To achieve salvation must make sharp break with former life.Niebuhr identified other types of religious organisations: Movements & •Members live communally – restricted contact with outside world – ‘brainwashed’. Members •Conservative moral thoughts e.g. about sex.Denominations Cult•E.g. Methodism, lying •Highly individualisticbetween sect & church. •Loose knitted•Membership less •Usually small groups around World Accommodating NRM’S Evaluationexclusive to sect – don’t shared themes/Interests. •Often break away from existing •Not clear whether organised according to theappeal to whole of •Usually no sharply defined churches/ denominations e.g. neo teachings/ individual members beliefs. Pentecostals who split from Catholicism. •Willis recognises himself that real NRM’S will rarely fitsociety like church. exclusive belief system. neatly – some may have features of all 3.•Broadly accept societies •Usually led by •Neither accept/reject the world. •Starke & Bainbridge – reject idea – says we shouldvalues – not linked to practitioners/therapists – who •Focus on religious rather than worldly distinguish them according to the degree ofstate. claim special knowledge. matters. conflict/tension between the religious group & wider society.•Impose minor •Tolerate other religionsrestrictions like no •Don’t demand strong World Affirming NRM’Salcohol, not as commitment. •Lack conventional features of religion – collective worship.demanding as cults. •Mainly world affirming – •Offers followers access to spiritual/supernatural powers. E.g. scientology.•Don’t claim monopoly claiming to improve life in the •Accept world as it is – optimistic promise followers success in terms of mainstream• accept other religious. world. goals/values – careers personal relationships.•Roy Wallis: •Non exclusive – tolerant of other religions.•how they see themselves: churches & sects claim their interpretation is the •Claims to offer special knowledge that enables followers to unlock their own spiritualonly legitimate. Denominations & cults accept their can be many. powers & achieve success/ overcome problems such as unhappiness/illness.•How they’re seen by wider society:•Churches and denominations are seen as respectable & legitimate, sects and •Most successful – enter trough training few demands – carry on life as normal.cults are seen as deviant.
Sects & Cults Explaining the growth of religious Relative deprivationStark & Bainbridge identify 2 organisations movements - Marginality •Refers to the subjective sense ofthat are in conflict with wider society sects & cults: •Secs draw members from the poor and being deprived – possible for oppressed. privileged person to feel they are •Weber suggests that such trends arise in deprived/disadvantaged in some way•Sects: result from schisms – split In existing groups who are marginal to society, such groupsorganisations – break away from churches usually compared with others. may feel dis- privileged – sects offer solution tobecause of doctrine disagreement. •Although MC people are materially this problem by offering their members a•S& B see sects as promising other worldly benefits – well-off they feel they are spiritually theodicy of dispriveledge (argument in defenceto those suffering economic deprivation/ethical of Gods goodness despite the existence of evil). deprived (Willis)deprivation. •Might explain misfortune as a test of faith •Turn to sect for sense of community. holding a promise of rewards in the future for •Stark & Bainbridge – argue its the•Cults : new religions such as Scientology. keeping the faith. relatively deprived who break away•tend to order worldly benefits to more prosperous from churches.individuals who are suffering from psychic deprivation •Stark & Bainbridge argue that world-– organisimic deprivation. Organisation, rejecting sects offer the deprived the•They subdivided cults according to how organisedthey are. Movements & compensators that they need for the rewards their denied in this world. Members •By contrast, privileged need no•Audience cults: least organised – don’t involveformal membership/ commitment. Littler interaction compensators – attracted to worldbetween members. Participation might be through affirming churches – that express theirthe media e.g. UFO cults. Social Change status and bring them further success •Wilson argues – rapid change disrupts and in achieving earthly rewards.•Client Cults: based on relationship between undermine established norms & values –consultant and client, provides services to followers. producing normlessness. •Response to uncertainty/insecurity – ppl may Growth of NRM’SE.g. medical miracles, emphasis shifted to therapies •Explanations put forward for bothpromising personal fulfilment. turn to sects as a solution, less attracted to traditional churches – too much commitment world rejecting/ world affirming. •Instead people prefer cults – less demanding •Wallis – points out changes –•Cultic movements: most organised. Demands higher increased time students spend inlevel of commitment. Aims to meet its members & require fewer sacrifices. education.religious needs – rarely allowed to belong to other •Free time from adult responsibilities –religious groups at same time. World affirming NRM’S enables counter culture to develop. •Bruce argues growth – a response to modernity •World – rejecting NRM’s more•They make useful distinctions between organisations – esp. to rationalisation of work. attractive offer young people more– however the idea of using the degree of conflict is •Work no longer provides meaning/source of idealistic way of life.similar to Treltschs distinction between church identity (before protestant ethnic gave work(accept) and sects (reject society. religious meaning) •Yet at same time were expected to achieve – world affirming NRM’S provide sense of identity.
Dynamic of Sects & NRM’S The Sectarian cycle Established sects•Churches – have a history stretching over many •Stark & Bainbridge see religious •Wilson argues not all sects follow this pattern:centuries, sects are often short –lived, organisations moving through a cycle – 1st •Conversionists sects such as evangelicals – aim tofrequently lasting only a single generation/less. stage theres tension between the needs convert large number of people – likely to grow of the deprived + privileged members of rapidly into larger more formal denominations.Denomination or death church. •Adventists such as Jehovah Witness await theNiebuhr argues – sects are world rejecting come •2. Deprived members break away + find second coming of Christ – to be saved – believeinto existence because of splitting from the world rejecting sect. they must hold themselves separate from thechurch – disagreement over religious doctrine. •3. denominationalism: the ‘ protestant corrupt world around them, separation preventsArgues that sects are short lived and that within a ethic’ effects – and the coolness of the 2nd them from compromising and becominggeneration, they either die out/compromise with generation means fervour disappears. denominations.the world, abandon extreme ideas and become •4. establishment: sect becomes moredenominations, reasons: world accepting tension reduces. •Wilson argues – some sects have survived over •5. When less privileged from the group, many generations – e.g. Penacostalsits – instead ofThe 2nd generation: born into sect, lack the break away to find new sect. becoming denominations – these groups becomecommitment to copy parent, who had established sects.consciously rejected the world and joined •Some succeed into socialising their children intovoluntarily. Organisation, high commitment – largely by keeping them awayThe protestant Ethic effect: sects that practice from wider world.asceticism tend to become prosperous and Movements & •He argues Globalisation will make it harder forupwardly mobile – members tempted tocompromise with the world – leave it. Members sects to keep themselves separate from outside world – however Globalisation make it easier toDeath of a leader: sects with charismatic leasers recruit in 3rd world .either collapse on leaders death – more Post-modernity and the New Ageburocratic leadership takes over – transforming it •Drane: argues its appeal is part of ato a denomination. shift towards postmodern society. New Age and Modernity •One of the features of postmodern Bruce argues its growth is result of the latest The Growth of the New Age society is a loss of faith – science phase of modern society – values individualism. New age covers a range of belief and activities that have promises to bring progress to a Key principle of new age beliefs – each individual been widespread since 1980’s. According to Heelas – 2 better world but instead its given us has the truth within themselves. common themes: war, genocide, environmental He sees New age beliefs as softer versions of more Self-spirituality: new agers seeking the spiritual have destruction and global warming. demanding religions – Buddhism. turned away from traditional ‘external’ religions such as •As result people lost faith in Heelas also sees New Age & Modernity linked: the churches & instead look inside themselves to find it. experts/ professionals such as Source of identity: ppl have different Detraditionalisation: New age rejects the spiritual scientists and doctors and roles, jobs, family = fragmented identity – NA = authority of external traditional sources such as priests. disillusioned with the church to meet source of Authentic Identity. Sacred texts. Instead – values personal experience & their spiritual needs – turn to NAM Rapid social change: disrupts established believes that we can discover the truth for ourselves to find truth for ourselves by looking norms/values = anomie NA= Certainty/Truth. within ourselves. within. Secularisation: removes traditional alternatives.
Religiosity and Social Groups Compensation for Deprivation Recent trends •Glock & stark & Stark & Bainbridge – •Women leaving church at faster rate than men.Gender & Religion people might participate in religion•Priesthoods of most religions are male, more Press from home, family and work = intensive because of the compensators for social •Brown : since 1960’s women started to rejectwomen participate in religious activities and orgasmic and ethical deprivation that itbelieve in God. traditional subordinate gender roles at same offers – these forms of deprivation are time – traditional religion also.•Miller & Hoffman – found that women express more common among women and thisgreater interest in religion – have a stronger explains their higher level of sectpersonal commitment to it and attend church membership. Ethnicity & religiositymore. •Biggest groups are Christians, Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs.Reason for Gender Differences: •Muslims, Hindu and black Christians more likely•Socialisation and gender roles Organisation, than white Christians to see religion as•Miller & Hoffman – women more religious associalised to be more passive, obedient and Movements & important.caring – qualities valued by most religions. Members Reasons for ethical differences:•Men who have these qualities more likely to be Most ethnic minorities originate from poorerreligious. countries with traditional cultures, both of•They note that women more likely to work part- which produce higher level of religious belief – Age + Religiontime or be full time carers + more scope for on arrival to UK they maintain a pattern they •The older a person – more likely they attendorganising their time to participate in religious with them from their country of origin. religious services.activates. •The under 15s – more likely to go to church than•Women attracted –source of gender identity. Cultural Defence older as their made to do so by parent.•Davie – argues womens closer proximity to birth •Bird – notes religion among minorities can be a •The over 65 – more likely to be sick/disabled& death, brings them closer to ultimate question. basis for community solidarity – means of and unable to attend. Higher death rates also makes this a smaller group – reduces total preserving ones language/culture - a way ofWomen and New Age number ‘available’ to attend. coping with oppression in racist society.•Women more associated with Nature and •Black Christians didnt feel welcome in whitehealing role, more attracted to New Age Reasons for age difference (Vaos & Crockett) churches – led to church such as Pentecostals.Movements that celebrate the natural + involves The aging effect: ppl turn to religion as they getcults of healing. older, as we approach death – naturally become Cultural Transition•Bruce – womens child birth experience makes more concerned bout spiritual matters and the •Religion can be used as source of easing thethem less aggressive and goal orientated more afterlife. transition into a new culture providing supportcooperative and caring – what men wish to The generation effect: as society becomes more and sense of community for minority groups.achieve, women wish to feel. secular, each new generation less religious – •Herberg: uses these explanations for high•On other hand some women ma be attracted to hence more old than young – C. levels of religious participation.fundamentalism because of the certainties of a Gill – no religious socialisation for children – less •Rastafarianism radically rejected the widertraditional gender role that is prescribed to them. likely to go church. Generation efft more society as racist and exploitative. significant.