Marxism, religion and change

Marxists see ruling class ideology as entirely...
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However, Marxists also recognise that religious ideas can be...
...partially independent from the economic base of society.
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This is called...
...relative autonomy.
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Religion can be both a force for stability but also...
... a force for change.
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This means that religion can have a ...
... a dual character.
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Marx did not see religion in entirely...
...negative terms.
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What does Marx describe religion as?
"The soul of soulless conditions"/ "heart of a heartless world."
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Who argued that religion inhibits change by disguising inequality but also challenge the status quo and encourage social change?
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For example: Religion sometimes preaches liberaion from slavery and misery but...
...senior clergy normally support the status quo.
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Who recognised that religion could have both positive and negative influences on social change?
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Although he accepts that religion often inhibits change, he emphasises that it can also inspire...
...rebellion and protest.
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For Bloch, what is religion an expression of?
The principle of hope.
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What is the principle of hope?
This refers to our dreams of a better life that contain images of utopia (the perfect world).
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How can image of utopia sometimes deceive people?
They promise people rewards in heaven that do not exist.
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However, these images may also help people to see...
...what needs to be changed in this world in order to create a better one.
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This, combined with effective political organisation and leadership, can bring about... change.
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What is liberation theology?
A movement that emerged within Catholic Church in Latin America at the end of the 60s, with a strong commitment to the poor and opposition to military dictatorships.
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For centuries, the Catholic church in Latin America had been an extremely conservative institution, encouraging...
...a fatalistic acceptance of poverty and supporting wealthy elites and military dictatorships.
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Wht were the 3 factors that lead to the emergence of liberation theology?
1. Increasing rural poverty 2. Human rights abuses following military take-over 3. Growing commitment among Catholic priests to an ideology that supported the poor and opposed violations of human rights.
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The empahsis in liberation theology is...
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What is praxis?
Practical action guided by theory.
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Unlike traditional Catholicism, which supported the status quo, liberation theology set out to...
...change society.
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For example: priests helped the poor etablish support groups known as...
...'base communities.'
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How did priests help the poor become aware about their situation and mobilise support?
Developing and runing literacy programmes.
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During the 1970s, Catholic priests actively resisted state...
...terror in Latin America.
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However, during the 1980s...
....the church's official attitude changed.
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On what grounds did Pope John Paul 11 condemn liberation theology?
He believes that it is similar to Marxism.
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What does he suggest that priests should concentrate on?
Pastoral activities and not political struggle.
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What did Casanova argue?
Liberation theology played an important role in resisting state terror and bringing about democracy in Latin American countries (most of which now have democratically elected governments.)
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Although Catholicim in Latin America has become more conservative since the 1970s, it continues to defend...
...the democracy and human rights that were achieved in part by liberation theology.
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The success of liberation theology has led some neo-marxists to question the view that religion is always...
...a conservative force.
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Who believed that religion can be a revolutionary force that brings about change?
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He argued that, in the case of liberation theology, religious ideas radicalised...
...the Catholic clergy in defence of peasants and workers which made them see that serving the poor was part of their Christian duty.
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Who questioned Marx's view that religin always legitimates social inequality?
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Both Maduro and Lowy see liberation theology as an example...
...religiously inspired social change but other Marxists disagree.
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The success of liberation theology in bringing about social change depends on how social change is...
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Although liberation theology may have helped to bring about democracy, it did not threaten the stability of ....
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What is a millenarian movement?
In Christian theology, this refers to the idea that Christ would come into the world for a second time and rule for a thousand years before the day of judgement and the end of the world.
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What does Worsley argue?
These movements expect the total and imminent transformation of this world by supernatural means.
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This would create a...
...heaven on earth.
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The transformation will be collective which means that...
...the group will be saved rather than individuals.
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The appeal of millenarian movements is larely to the poor because they promise...
...immediate improvement to their suffering.
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What sort of situation do millenarian movements often arise in?
Colnial situations.
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European colonaism lead to economic exploitation and cultural and religious...
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For example:Through Christian missionaries and their...
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At the same time, it shattered the traditional tribal social structures and ...
...culture of the colonised people.
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Local leaders and gods lost...
...power and credibility.
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Worsey studied the millenarian movements in Melanesia (Western Pacific) known as...
...cargo cults.
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This arose when the colonised isalnders felt wrongfully deprived of...
...cargo (material goods).
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During which 2 centuries did these cargo cults arise?
19th/20th century.
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What do these cargo cults argue?
That the cargo that the natives rightfully deserved were diverted by the whites for themselves and this unjust social order was about to be overturned.
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These movements led to widespread unrest that...
...threatened colonial rule.
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Worsley notes that the movements combined elements of traditional beliefs with elements of...
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For example: Ideas about a heaven where the suffering of the righteous will be...
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What does Worsley mean when he describes these movements as 'pre-political?'
They used religious ideas and images but they united native populations in mass movements that spanned tribal divisions.
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However, many of the secular nationalist leaders and parties that were able to overthrow colonial rule in the 1950s and 60s developed out of ...
...millenarian movements.
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Simalarly, from a Marxist perspective, Engels argues that these movements represent the frst awakening of...
...'proletarian self- consciousness.'
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What is the name of the Marxist who is interested in how the ruling class maintain their control over society through the use of ideas rather than simply through coercion (force)?
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What does hegemony refer to?
The ruling class are able to use ideas such as religion to maintain control.
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When hegemony is established, the ruling class can rely on...
...popular consent to maintain their rule (so there is less need for physical coercion.)
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For example: What did Gramsci note about the catholic church in Italy in the 1920s and 30s?
Their immense conservative ideological power which helped to win public support for Mussolini's regime.
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However, hegemony can never be...
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It is always possible for the working class to develop an alternative... of how society should be organised/ran.
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What can this be known as?
A counter-hegemony.
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Like Engels, why does Gramsci see religion as having a dual character?
Because religion can both challenge and support the rule of the ruling class.
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How does Gramsci argue that religion can help see through the ruling class hegemony?
Offering a vision of a fairer/better world.
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Similarly, some clergy lower in the hierarchy of the church may act as... intellectuals.
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What are organic intellectuals?
Educators/ organisers/ leaders that help workers see the situation that they are in and support working class movements such as trade unions.
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Name the marxist who applied Gramsci's idea in a case study comparing class struggle in the two communities of the textile workers and the coal miners?
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Where/ when did this take place?
Kentucky in the 1920s/30s.
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Although both were working-class and evangelical protestant, they experienced different levels of...
...strike activity/ industrial conflict.
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Explain the stance of the coal miners in one word:
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They fought to gain both recognition for the movement and...
..better working conditions.
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How did the textile workers differ?
They didn't often complain, were quiet in their protests and accepted the status quo.
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Following Gramsci, Billings argues that the differences in levels of militancy can be understood in terms of ...
...hegemony and the role of religion.
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What 3 ways did Billings identify that religion either supported or challenged their employers' hegemony?
1. Leadership 2.Organisation 3. Support
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Describe the miners' leadership:
They had organic intellectuals in the form of preachers who were themselves miners and in support of the trade union. This helped convert other miners to the cause.
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Describe the textile workers' leadership:
They lacked leadership of organic intellectuals so they were easily influenced by teachings of the clergy who supported the status quo.
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Describe the miners' organisation:
They were able to use independent churches to hold meetings and organise.
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Describe the textile workers' organisation:
They remained in company churches that were under control of the textile mill owners so they were unable to effectively hold meetings and organise.
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Describe the miners' support:
The independent churches kept the miners' morale high with supportive sermons/ prayer meetings/ group singing.
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Describe the textile workers' support:
Textile workers who engaged in union activity were faced with opposition with local church leaders who branded them as communists so they had little to no support.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


However, Marxists also recognise that religious ideas can be...


...partially independent from the economic base of society.

Card 3


This is called...


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


Religion can be both a force for stability but also...


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


This means that religion can have a ...


Preview of the front of card 5
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