Religion in Secularizing Society: The Europeans' Religion at the End of the 20th Century

By Loek Halman; Ole Riis | Go to book overview

between these two criteria for the selection of countries. While at least some of the statistics for structural globalization allow the inclusion of more countries, the availability and limited possibility of cross-culturally valid measures of religious globalization seem to work in the opposite direction. How to resolve this tension remains an unsettled issue.

It should be noted that our data are cross-sectional, although the theoretical framework delineates longitudinal processes. In forthcoming analyses we intend to include longitudinal data, e.g., the EVS data from 1981 and 1990 together with the World Value Study data from 1996 and possibly the forthcoming EVS data from 1999. We can then investigate whether, for example, religious cosmopolitism has developed over time as would be expected from changes in structural globalization. Similar analyses can be performed with regard to religious differentiation and heterogenization. These analyses might also shed more light on the causal linkages between structural and cultural globalization.

However, the most important result of our empirical comparative analyses is the evidence against structural globalization as a onedimensional phenomenon and the assumption of similar patterns along the different aspects of religious cultural globalization. In fact, globalization is a multifaceted phenomenon and should be treated as such in empirical research activities. This implies, of course, complex research designs, especially since we have found that opposite outcomes can be expected for different dimensions of globalization. Thus, for those who believe that globalization is 'a key idea in order to understand the transition of human society into the third millennium' (Waters, 1995: 1), a rich variety of studies needs to be done.


References

Appadurai, A. 1990. 'Disjuncture and Difference in the Global Cultural Economy'. Pp. 295–310 in M. Featherstone (ed.), Global Culture. London: Sage.

Berger, P. 1967. The Sacred Canopy. Garden City: Doubleday & Company.

Beyer, P. 1990. 'Privatization and the Public Influence of Religion in Global Society'. Pp. 373–398 in M. Featherstone (ed.), Global Culture. London: Sage.

Beyer, P. 1994. Religion and Globalization. London: Sage.

Cédora, J. 1994. 'The Motivational Force of Values and Attitudes on Human Behaviour in the Quest for Happiness, Well-being, and Satisfaction'. Pp. 1–30 in J. Cécora (ed.), Changing Values and Attitudes in Family Households with Rural Peer Groups, Social Networks, and Action Spaces. Bonn: FAA.

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