tisdag, juni 07, 2016
"Sweden is often described as one of the most secular countries in the world, a country where only 45 percent of the population state that they believe in God (Bromander 2013). Yet, like several other Northern European nation-states, it has had an established national church for most of its modern history. As exemplified by the above quote from one of the government bills preparing for the separation of church and state in year 2000, the religious heritage of that church now forms a significant part of the national cultural heritage protected by law and government policies. These Northern European countries can thus appear as something of a paradox in terms of secularization; they are, at the same time, some of the most secularized countries in the world, and countries where state and church retain close ties (e.g. Casanova 2015, Harding 2015). The relationship between heritagization and secularization is a complex one; on the one hand, the religious heritage of established and formerly established religious institutions still play a significant role in in the self-understanding of many officially secular nation-states (cf. Smith 2003). On the other hand, it can be argued that the values ascribed to religious objects and built heritage have changed in a “migration of the holy” (Cavanaugh 2011), from religious veneration to the veneration of history, identity and aesthetic values, thus making heritagization and secularization mutually enforcing processes."