"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Monday, July 9, 2012

A Post-Christian Era?

For some time now we have been hearing about Western Europe and North America living through a post-Christian era. How that may be so and what its causes are continue to be debated, as in this new book to be published at year's end: Nancy Christie and Michael Gauvreau, eds., The Sixties and Beyond: Dechristianization in North America and Western Europe, 1945-2000 (U of Toronto Press, 2012), 512pp.

About this book the publisher tells us: 
In the decades following the Second World War, North America and Western Europe experienced widespread secularization and dechristianization; many scholars have pinpointed the 1960s as a pivotally important period in this decline. The Sixties and Beyond examines the scope and significance of dechristianization in the western world between 1945 and 2000.A thematically wide-ranging and interdisciplinary collection, The Sixties and Beyond uses a framework that compares the social and cultural experiences of North America and Western Europe during this period. The internationally based contributors examine the dynamic place of Christianity in both private lives and public discourses and practices by assessing issues such as gender relations, family life, religious education, the changing relationship of church and state, and the internal dynamics of religious organizations. The Sixties and Beyond is an excellent contribution to the burgeoning scholarship on the 1960s as well as to the history of Christianity in the western world.

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