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date: 22 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the relationship between religious cultures and the forces of globalization. It first considers the distinction between teleological-homogenizing approaches to religious developments in modernity, which assume that secularization is inevitable, and those that emphasize cross-national variability and historical contingency. In particular, it discusses the cultural sociology approach, the value of which can be recognized when accounting for the religious phenomenon that strongly refutes the secularization thesis—the various forms of Pentecostalism that have attracted 500 million adherents, particularly in the Global South. The article goes on to explore how religious cultural systems have been involved with globalization, focusing on Catholicism, Pentecostalism, and Islam. It also proposes a cultural approach that is more sensitive to the ways in which the discourses of religion (particularly Islam) and globalization are connected in a binary relationship to one another.

Keywords: religious culture, globalization, modernity, secularization, historical contingency, cultural sociology, Catholicism, Pentecostalism, Islam, cultural approach

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