When Religion and Culture Part Ways
Author(s): Olivier Roy [translated by Ros Schwarz]
Reviewed by: Murad Wilfried Hofmann, Bonn, Germany
In its Introduction, the book under review opens with questions like (1) Why is the Catholic Church finding it hard to retain its flock while favouring the ordination of gay priests? (2) Why is Buddhism catching on in the West? (3) How can the spread of Islam be explained? The author registers that secularization has not eradicated religion, claiming that there was a close link between secularization and religious revivalism, which is not a reaction against secularization but its product, claiming that secularism engenders religion. He claims that in Great Britain, there has been a general decline in religious practice — except among Poles, Muslims, and Pentecostalists. In contrast, a return to religion can be witnessed in other continents, Christian Pentacostalism and Mormonism being the fastest growing religions in the world....