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Carrying Religion into a Secularising Europe

Montserratian Migrants' Experiences of Global Processes in British Methodism

Matthew Wood

Migrants to Europe often perceive themselves as entering a secular society that threatens their religious identities and practices. Whilst some sociological models present their responses in terms of cultural defence, ethnographic analysis reveals a more complex picture of interaction with local contexts. This essay draws upon ethnographic research to explore a relatively neglected situation in migration studies, namely the interactions between distinct migration cohorts - in this case, from the Caribbean island of Montserrat, as examined through their experiences in London Methodist churches. It employs the ideas of Weber and Bourdieu to view these migrants as 'religious carriers', as collective and individual embodiments of religious dispositions and of those socio-cultural processes through which their religion is reproduced. Whilst the strategies of the cohort migrating after the Second World War were restricted through their marginalised social status and experience of racism, the recent cohort of evacuees fleeing volcanic eruptions has had greater scope for strategies which combat secularisation and fading Methodist identity.

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Youth and Religiosity in Hungary, 2000-2008

Gergely Rosta

This essay analyses the changing religiosity of the Hungarian youth population between the ages of 15 and 29 after the millennium. The basis for this empirical investigation is provided by the three waves (2000, 2004, 2008) of the National Youth Study. From their results, a similar picture emerges on the religiosity of the youth as from other nation-wide surveys, in relation to the whole adult population. Since the first Youth Study a slow but steady decline has been witnessed in different dimensions of religiosity (practice, faith, self-classification). It is especially salient for institutionalised religiosity. At the same time, the vast majority of the Hungarian youth confess to believing in some kind of supernatural instance, though not necessarily a traditional Christian one.

The socio-demographical background to the differences in religiosity can be partly explained by the secularisation theory, but the effects of an expanded religious education are present too. In contrast to the secularisation thesis, however, the transmission of traditional religious conviction is much more likely in families with better educational backgrounds than other parts of the society, a phenomenon which points to a more and more elite type of church religiosity in Hungary.

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Where going back is a step forward

The re-traditionalising of sport games in post-Soviet Buriatiia

Stefan Krist

After a brief description of how Soviet policy influenced and changed the centuries-old traditional Buriat sports holiday called Surkharban, this paper discusses the changes that this festivity has been undergoing since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Under Soviet rule, this annual holiday, earlier linked to religious rituals, became secularised. Party and State propaganda infiltrated the event in a variety of ways and international rules were adopted for the games. The last 15 years have seen a reversal of this process, leading to a stormy re-traditionalisation of the holiday in general and of the games in particular. However, this did not occur in a uniform manner and is still far from being completed. On the contrary, the author has been observing a wide spectrum of local variants and new changes every year. He analyses the ways in which Buriat sports games are performed and how these public events mirror the manifold socioeconomic and political developments in post-Soviet Buriatiia.

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Sartre and the Death of God

John H. Gillespie

theories that have continued to propound the inevitable decline of religion and the forward march of secularisation as outlined, for example, in Steve Bruce’s book God Is Dead: Secularization in the West (2002). However, the recent religious turn in

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Popular Spirituality

Hubert Knoblauch

The last decades witnessed the rise of a new form of religiosity that is often referred to as spirituality. Whereas in scholarly research the idea dominated that spirituality poses an 'alternative' to religion, I want to argue that spirituality must not be necessarily conceived of in opposition to religion but rather transgressing the boundaries of the religious. By reason of this transgression spirituality becomes 'popular'. On the basis of a sociological definition of the spiritual that includes, among others, a decisive stress on the experience of great transcendencies, I want to back this view with empirical data. Since there is already a large amount of qualitative data, I am drawing here on large-scale quantitative data from a recent multinational survey. The data proves that huge numbers of people in various societies and religious cultures claim to have had experiences of great transcendencies. Thus the number of people who had such an experience indicates the quantitative aspect of what I call the popularity of spirituality.

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Sacred Lineages of Samarqand: History and Identity

Azim Malikov

the family and the descendants of Mahdumi A'zam. Nevertheless, secularised society, Soviet education and academic science also strongly influenced the author's views. Twenty-five years have passed since the publication of the book by Kattaev, which

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Sweden and Shakespeare's Protestant Afterlife

Three Translators in the Nineteenth Century

Per Sivefors

’ theories and practice were the result of straightforward secularisation; rather, it could be said to reflect Stephen Gaukroger's refutation of the assumption that ‘traffic between the religious and the secular is one way’ in the period. 1 Differently put

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Liturgical Time in Chaucer's Canterbury Tales

Meditated, Measured and Manipulated

Alireza Mahdipour, Hossein Pirnajmuddin, and Pyeaam Abbasi

to Jesus's answer to Peter: ‘I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven’. 16 In conclusion, from the late medieval period, when the Church's control over the population began to wane, pilgrimage was secularised, with many

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Book and Film Reviews

Valdis Tēraudkalns, Graham Harvey, Vera Lazzaretti, Nélia Dias, Rebecca Janzen, Amanda Lanzillo, Sandhya Fuchs, Zoë Slatoff, Karen O'Brien-Kop, Lu Liu, Marco Guglielmi, Elizabeth Coville, Aurora Donzelli, and Dana Rappoport

ALTNURME, Riho, ed., Old Religion, New Spirituality: Implications of Secularisation and Individualisation in Estonia. xii, 185 pp., 6 tables, 1 map, references, index. Leiden: Brill, 2023. Paperback, $54. ISBN: 978-90-04-52446-0. Old

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Between Individual Spirituality and Responsibility for Society

Mirjam Lücking

Whereas the word is that the congregations of the official Protestant Churches and the Catholic Church are shrinking and few people take part in the services, a clear increase can be seen in the area of popular esotericism and spirituality. In the double sense, the question arises here as to the relationship of 'word' and 'deed'. How do our traditions respond to the challenge to our ability to act in relation to the individual's search for spirituality and to responsibility for society? Anthropological ways of seeing modernity, secularisation and Christianity (1) indicate theories regarding developments in religion and Christianity, and these are illustrated by empirical examples of a spiritual society (2). This is discussed in terms of what it can mean to take on responsibility (3), and what the relationship is between this and piety's end in itself.