Despite the forces of secularization in Europe, old pilgrimage routes are attracting huge numbers of people and given new meanings in the process. In pilgrimage, religious or spiritual meanings are interwoven with social, cultural and politico-strategic concerns. This book explores three such concerns under intense debate in Europe: gender and sexual emancipation, (trans)national identities in the context of migration, and European unification and religious identifications in a changing religious landscape. The interdisciplinary contributions to this book explore a range of such controversies and issues including: Africans renewing family ties at Lourdes, Swedish women at midlife or young English men testing their strength on the Camino to Santiago de Compostela, New Age pilgrims and sexuality, Saints’ festivals in Spain and Brittany, conservative Catholics challenging Europe’s liberal policies on abortion, Polish migrants and French Algerians reconfiguring their transnational identity by transporting their familiar Madonna to their new home, new sacred spaces created such as the shrine of Our Lady of Santa Cruz, traditional Christian saints such as Mary Magdalene given new meanings as new age goddess, and foundation legends of shrines revived by new visionaries. Pilgrimage sites function as nodes in intersecting networks of religious discourses, geographical routes and political preoccupations, which become stages for playing out the boundaries between home and abroad, Muslims and Christians, pilgrimage and tourism, Europe and the world. This book shows how the old routes of Europe are offering inspirational opportunities for making new journeys.

chapter 1|18 pages

Old Routes, New Journeys

Reshaping Gender, Nation and Religion in European Pilgrimage
ByWilly Jansen

chapter 2|18 pages

Interconnected and Gendered Mobilities

African Migrants on Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Lourdes in France
ByCatrien Notermans

chapter 3|18 pages

Big, Strong and Happy

Reimagining Femininity on the Way to Compostela
ByLena Gemzöe

chapter 5|18 pages

EU Criticism in Two Transnational Marian Anti-abortion Movements

ByJudith Samson

chapter 6|16 pages

The Miraculous Medal

Linking People Together Like the Beads of the Rosary
ByEric Venbrux

chapter 7|22 pages


ByMaeve Hickey

chapter 8|18 pages

Producers of Meaning and the Ethics of Movement

Religion, Consumerism and Gender on the Road to Compostela
ByEduardo Chemin

chapter 10|16 pages

Home and Away in an Increasingly Multicultural Britain

Pilgrimage, Parish and Polish Migration
ByJohn Eade, Joanna Krotofil

chapter 11|14 pages

Festivals of Moors and Christians

Replaying the Religious Frontier in Andalusia, Spain
ByHenk Driessen

chapter 12|16 pages

The Virgin Mary, the Sanctuary and the Mosque

Interfaith Coexistence at a Pilgrimage Centre
ByDionigi Albera

chapter 13|12 pages


Pilgrimage, Moral Geography and Contemporary Religion in the West
ByLawrence Taylor