chapter  15
18 Pages

Secularisation

For meaning theorists the process of secularisation in modern industrial societies is problematic as it is for all theories that locate the source of religion in the human condition. In Berger’s case, if religion provides the bulwark against alienation, how is secularisation possible? Many theorists including Luckmann have simply attempted to deny that secularisation is taking place at all. It is an illusion generated by the decline of traditional forms of religion. In place of these forms, however, new forms are growing up continuously, these theorists argue. Berger, however, does not deny the facts of secularisation and is in fact one of the leading theorists of this phenomenon. Before examining his view, however, some background discussion is necessary. In this chapter, also, other views on the process of secularisation will be contrasted with those of Berger.