Religion and contemporary sociological theories

Religion and contemporary sociological theories

Bryan S Turner City University of New York, USA and the University of Western Sydney, Australia

abstract In the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, the sociology of religion enjoyed a remarkable growth in both theory and empirical research. The scholarly consensus argues that the early secularization thesis associated with modernization theory was misleading and simplistic, or that it was primarily relevant to northern Europe. Beyond the European framework, there is ample evidence that religion plays a major role in society, culture and politics. With urbanization in the developing world, there has been increasing piety and religious revivalism. Religion will be a major factor in political and ideological struggles across the globe in this century. One negative aspect of this focus however has been overconcentration on radical Islam and other manifestations of religious violence. 

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