Welcome to the 20th Nordic Conference
in
Sociology of Religion

August 4 - 6, 2010 at University of Agder Kristiansand, Norway

MULTI-RELIGIOUS SOCIETIES- POLARIZATION, CO-EXISTENCE, INDIFFERENCE

The world, including the Nordic countries, is becoming increasingly muliti-religious in the sense that different religious and secular world-views co-exist. Sometimes they live "parallel lives", while in other instances we find intense forms of exchange and mutual influence between world-views. Sometimes different religious groups live in harmony, but there are also examples of tension and outright conflict. Conflicts over religion may dominate the whole society, or the majority of a society's population may be rather indifferent to these issues. In some instances social scientists and the media tend to see religion as a fundamental force in society, in other situations religion is seen as an epi-phenomen and a mere reflection of social, economic, ethnic or nationalistic forces.

In this conference, plenary speakers – and also, hopefully, papers presented – will shed light on the nature of multi-religious societies, and how such societies meet the challenges of religious plurality. We welcome you to Kristiansand, Norway to discuss an important topic in the sociology of religion and a central issue in contemporary society.

The language of the conference is English.

The keynote speakers of the conference are professor emeritus James A. Beckford (University of Warwick), professor Helen Rose Ebaugh (University of Houston), Dr. Effie Fokas (London School of Economics) and professor Ole Riis (University of Agder)