By Erin K. Wilson (auth.)
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Extra resources for After Secularism: Rethinking Religion in Global Politics
Yet dominant modes of secularism still exercise significant influence and control over perceptions and understandings of religion and politics. In the next section, I explore four cognitive moves by secularist ideology Subordinating Religion 43 that achieve and maintain the dominance of mainstream secularist thinking over understandings of and approaches to the study of religion and politics. The four moves of secularism The dominant forms of secularist ideology, I suggest, contain four key cognitive moves, influenced by and developed throughout key historical and philosophical moments, which work to produce a view that religion and politics are separated in the West and that religion is unimportant for political thought and analysis.
Especially in the 1950s and 36 After Secularism 1960s, political scientists believed that modernization would reduce the political significance of primordial phenomena such as ethnicity and religion’ (Fox 2001: 55). This belief in the declining political significance of religion is a central component of mainstream secularization theory. Secularization theory Secularization theory has been an underlying assumption of the social sciences and International Relations for much of their existence. Though somewhat discredited in many sectors of academia as a result of the seeming resurgence of religion in the post-Cold War era (Berger 1999; Casanova 2006a: 9; Habermas 2008: 17–8; Haynes 2007: 27–8), its ideas and assumptions in many ways continue to pervade contemporary research on religion (see, for example, Abrams, Yaple and Wiener 2011; Greene 2011).
Though somewhat discredited in many sectors of academia as a result of the seeming resurgence of religion in the post-Cold War era (Berger 1999; Casanova 2006a: 9; Habermas 2008: 17–8; Haynes 2007: 27–8), its ideas and assumptions in many ways continue to pervade contemporary research on religion (see, for example, Abrams, Yaple and Wiener 2011; Greene 2011). As Jonathan Fox has highlighted, the social sciences were founded on the rejection of religion. Scholars in this area and, by extension, in International Relations were concerned with finding ‘rational’ explanations for social phenomena to replace religious ones (Fox 2001: 56).
After Secularism: Rethinking Religion in Global Politics by Erin K. Wilson (auth.)