Does modernization lead to the decline of religion? This question lies at the centre of a key debate in the sociology of religion. During the past decade American scholars, using primarily American data, have dominated this debate and have made a strong case that the answer to this question is no. Recently, however, a new crop of European scholars, working with new sources of European data, have uncovered evidence that points toward an affirmative answer.
This volume pays special attention to these trends and developments to provide the reader with a more well-rounded understanding of the many ways in which religion interacts with modernization. Respected scholars such as David Voas, Steve Bruce and Anthony Gill examine modern societies across the world in this splendid book which will interest sociologists, political scientists, historians, and theologians in equal measure.
Table of Contents
List of Tables
List of Graphs
Detlef Pollack and Daniel Olson
Chapter 1: Introduction: Religious Change in Modern Societies- Perspectives Offered By the Sociology of Religion
Section One: The secularization theory: Classical assumptions and ramifications
Chapter 2: The Continuing Secular Transition
Chapter 3: God, Gaelic and Needlepoint: Religion as a Social Accomplishment
Chapter 4: Religion in Central and Eastern Europe: Was There a Re-awakening After the Breakdown of Communism?
Section Two: The market model: Classical assumptions and ramifications
Chapter 5: Quantitative Evidence Favoring and Opposing the Religious Market Model
Chapter 6: Secularization and the State:
The Role Government Policy Plays in Determining Social Religiosity
Chapter 7: Unsecular Europe: The Persistence of Religion
Section 3: The individualization thesis: Classical assumptions and ramifications
Chapter 8: From ‘Believing without belonging’ to ‘Vicarious Religion’: Understanding the Patterns of Religion in Modern Europe
Chapter 9: The Cultural Paradigm: Declines in Belonging and Then Believing
Chapter 10: Religious individualization or secularization: An attempt to evaluate the thesis of religious individualization in Eastern and Western Germany
Gert Pickel and Detlef Pollack
Section Four: New theories on religion and modernity exemplified at the European case
Chapter 11: Religion and Science or Religion versus Science? About the Social Construction of the Science-Religion-Antagonism in the German Democratic Republic and its Lasting Consequences
Chapter 12: Secularization Theory and Rational Choice:
An integration of macro- and micro-theories of secularization using the example of Switzerland
Detlef Pollack is Professor of Comparative Sociology of Culture at Europa-Universitat Viadrina, Germany.
Daniel V. A. Olson is Associate Professor of Sociology at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana.