26 November 2015

New article on media and new forms of authority by Stig Hjarvard

Professor Stig Hjarvard has published the article “Mediatization and the changing authority of religion” in the journal Media, Culture & Society. Both mass media and social network media have become important sources of information and experiences about religion. The mediatization of religion challenges the authority of existing religious organizations at the same time as various media allow for new forms of religious beliefs and practices to appear. Media provide a backdrop of ‘banal religion’, comprized of a bricolage of representations and practices without any necessary connection to specific, organized forms of religion.

Max Weber’s typology of authority may provide a partial understanding of the changing authority of religion in contemporary society, but the media also allow other forms of authority to emerge. In a mediatized environment, religious legitimacy is not only produced by means of tradition and charisma but also rests upon voluntary acceptance by the individual and references to popular media culture. 

Read the full article here.

doi:10.1177/0163443715615412 * (OnlineFirst), November 20, 2015, page 1-10.