This class provides an introduction to the long-standing and wide-ranging debates in sociology about secularization. The central question that we will explore from a variety of perspectives is: What happens to religion under the conditions of modernity—and why and how so? What we will be trying to figure out is whether modernity (and post-modernity) secularizes religion, strengthens religion, transforms religion, or produces some other effect. Secularization was a central concern in the thinking of the founding fathers of sociology—Weber, Durkheim, Marx, and others. It has also been the core concern of the field of sociology of religion from the start.
University of Notre DameInstitution
Private College or University Institution Type
Undergraduate Course Class Type
2008 Date Published
Religious Studies, Sociology Discipline
General Comparative Traditions Religous Tradition
Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars Topics