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Accepted Paper:

Making place: the changing role of the parish church in village life in the Netherlands  
Kim Knibbe (Groningen University)

Paper long abstract:

In this paper I will elaborate on the changing role of the parish church in practices of 'place making' in village life in the south of the Netherlands, based on ethnographic research. Historically, the clergy increased its control over village life in the south since the 1920-ies, in response to the threats of 'modernization'. As in the rest of the Netherlands, the process of depillarization has changed the place of the church in social life drastically. However, I will argue that on the local level it was the process of polarization between liberal Catholics and neo-conservatives that has most drastically influenced the attitude towards the church as an institution and subsequently the role it plays in local life. To analyze this process, I will draw on the theoretical approaches such as developed by Doreen Massey (2005) Kim Knott (2005) and Hervieu-L├ęger (2002). Furthermore, I will contrast this account to other 'ethnographies of Catholicism' available in the literature.

Panel W032
Ethnographies of Catholicism
  Session 1