Bad religion/good spirituality? Explorations of religion in contemporary Scandinavian films

  • Author(s): Sofia Sjo
  • When: 2012-01
  • Where: Journal of Scandinavian Cinema
  • The focus of this article is on the many Scandinavian films produced in the last decade that address religious topics. The main thesis of the study is that insights from the field of sociology of religion can help contextualize contemporary Scandinavian films dealing with religion, deepening our understanding of both the inspiration for these films and their reception. Five common ways of representing religion are presented, illustrated by five films. Discussion focuses on the ways in which religion is both criticized and affirmed; the depiction of specific kinds of religion; and three theories of religious and cultural change - secularization, detraditionalization and post-secularization - that can illuminate the cinematic representation of religion.

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