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The return of religion: Globalisation, belief and the public sphere

Lecture by José Casanova and Nilüfer Göle


In this session, José Casanova and Nilüfer Göle discuss how the role of religion has changed in our globalised society and how belief is integrated today in an ever more interconnected public sphere.

In Europe, modernity is often associated with secularism. Yet, over time we are seeing that religious affiliation is actually increasing in places as diverse as South Korea, China, the African continent, Latin America and the Muslim world. Far from being the norm, European secularization seems more and more like an exception in the world. Could it be that globalization is doing more to foment religious belief than question it? Do increasing economic interdependence between countries and the free exchange of ideas facilitated by new technologies extend skepticism towards religious orthodoxies? Or do they strengthen connections between those who already share beliefs?

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