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Religious Insulation As A Mode Of Interdependence. Relating Catholicism And Modernity

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Chapter Summary

This chapter addresses the problem that concerns the connection between religions and the societies that surround them. It takes the relationship between Catholicism and modernity between 1800 and 1960 as an example. The chapter introduces the traditional view, which holds that there is a natural, self-evident and unbridgeable opposition between religion and modernity. It describes the Catholic Churchs perception and its strategic response of insulation against what was felt to be the threat of secular modernity. The chapter assumes an observers perspective and argues that this antagonistic view fails to notice the connections and interdependences which exist between Catholicism and modernity on a deeper level. It claims that the approach which argues for the modernisation of religion in modernity concurs with new theories about religions that have been developed by the social sciences and religious studies in the last decades. Finally, the chapter looks at comparable developments in Judaism.

Keywords: Catholic Churchs perception; Catholicism; Judaism; modernity



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