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The i-zation of Society, Religion, and Neoliberal Post-Secularism

24 November, 2017 17:41
The i-zation of Society, Religion, and Neoliberal Post-Secularism

by Adam Possamai

Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan (November 28, 2017)

This book explores the elective affinity of religion and post-secularism with neoliberalism. With the help of digital capitalism, neoliberalism dominates, more and more, all aspects of life, and religion is not left unaffected. While some faith groups are embracing this hegemony, and others are simply following the signs of the times, changes have been so significant that religion is no longer what it used to be.

Linking theories from Fredric Jameson and George Ritzer, this book presents the argument that our present society is going through a process of i-zation in which

(1) capitalism dominates not only our outer, social lives (through, for example, global capitalism) but also our inner, personal lives, through its expansion in the digital world, facilitated by various i-technology applications;

(2) the McDonaldization process has now been normalized; and

(3) religiosity has been standardized. Reviewing the new inequalities present in this i-society, the book considers their impact on Jurgen Habermas’s project of post-secularism, and appraises the roles that various religions may have in supporting and/or countering this process. It concludes by arguing that Habermas’s post-secular project will occur but that, paradoxically, the religious message(s) will be instrumentalized for capitalist purposes. 

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

  • Part I: Religion and Neoliberalism

2. Religions Aligned with Neoliberalism

3. Religions Within Neoliberalism

4. Religions Alternatives to Neoliberalism

5. There Is No Such Thing as a Religion

  • Part II: Aggiornamento of Critical Social Theories: The i-zation of Society Religion and Post-secularism

6. Jameson (1): From Late Capitalism to Digital Capitalism

7. Jameson (2): From Pastiche to the Pygmalion Process

8. Ritzer (1): From the McDonaldization Thesis

9. Ritzer (2): Standardization and Branding

10. Habermas (1): A Neoliberal Post-secular Project

11. Habermas (2): Neoliberal Post-secularism and the i-zation of Society

  • Part III: Policy Implication: A New Compassionate Tax

12. Revising Religious Tax Exemption

13. Conclusions: A Global Compassionate Tax

About the Author

Adam Possamai is Professor in Sociology and Director of Research in the School of Social Sciences and Psychology at Western Sydney University. He is the (co)author and (co)editor of a dozen academic books, 5 novels, and close to 80 refereed articles and book chapters. He is the past President of the International Sociological Association’s Committee 22 on the Sociology of Religion. He has been a visiting Professor at the City University of New York and the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. His latest books are Religions, Nations and Transnationalism in Multiple Modernities (edited with Patrick Michel and Bryan Turner, 2017, Palgrave McMillan), Religion and Non-Religion among Australian Aboriginal Peoples (edited with James Cox, 2016, Routledge), The Sociology of Shari’a: Case Studies from Around the World (edited with James Richardson and Bryan Turner, 2015, Springer) and the novel L’histoire extraordinaire de Baudelaire (2017, Rivière Blanche).

Source: Palgrave Macmillan

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