chapter  9
18 Pages

The city, the church, and the 1960s

On secularisation theory and the Swedish translation of Harvey Cox’s The Secular City
WithAnton Jansson

You have download access for this chapter.

PDF 0.17MB

In this chapter, the author presents and discusses secularisation theory as a time-specific form of knowledge in Sweden. It focuses on the translation and adaptation of an internationally renowned work into a new national context and how it was remoulded in the process. The chapter discusses the relationship between religion and knowledge, specifically the role of churches and the entanglement of knowledge with ethical encouragements. Generally, critics of the secularisation theory do not deny that there has been a religious transformation during the modern era but doubt the necessity and universality, as well as the progressive or even teleological implications, of the secularisation theory. Hans Joas is not alone in having identified the 1960s and 1970s as the period when secularisation theory was at its peak. Secularisation could perhaps be countered, but the epistemological credibility of the secularisation theory was rarely challenged. In a way, secularisation theory was accepted and even bolstered by parts of the Christian establishment.