Religion and social change

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  • Religion and Social change
    • Conservative force
      • Seen as traditional through its encouragement of traditional morals and values etc.
        • I.e. Abortions and Homosexuals
      • Religion tends to keep things as they are.
        • I.e. the Caste system in India
      • Marxists, Functionalists and feminists all agree that Religion is conservative
        • Marxist and feminists see this through oppression
        • Functionalists say religion promotes stability
    • Social change
      • Engels suggested religion could be a revolutionary force
      • Liberation theology
      • Martin Luther King
      • Fundamentalists promote social change but as a means of returning to a more traditional form of religion
    • Weber
      • Religion can create a capitalist work ethic
      • The idea of predestination promoted hard work
        • Ascetic ideal
    • Conflict and stability
      • Functionalists say religion brings stability
      • Religion only creates stability within one community not between religions
      • Huntington - a 'clash of civilisations'
        • Conflicts caused by differing cultures and beliefs I.e. western and Islamic
        • Ignores conflicts within civilisations
    • New religious organisations
      • World rejecting movements
        • They requires total commitment and cut people off from society i.e. Moonies
      • World affirming movements
        • like self help/therapy groups and are tolerant of other religions
      • World accommodating movements
        • traditionally more relgous
      • Result due to the uncertainties of social change
        • Marginality - promise of better in the afterlife.
          • Weber called this the 'theodicy of disprivilege'
        • Relative deprivation
        • Modernity and post modernity - crisis of identity
    • Society changes
      • Urbanisation and globalisation have changed the nature of religion
      • Religious communities have now had to expand meaning bonds between the are weaker
      • Secularisation
      • The UK is now more multicultural due to Globalisation


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