The ‘Logic’ of Mediatization Theory in Religion:
A critical consideration of a new paradigm
Keywords:mediatization mediation religion internet
The concept of mediatization was introduced to research on religion a decade ago by several scholars of communication: Hepp, Hjarvard and Sá Martino. The approach is controversial and has been debated in religious studies and beyond. This article critically analyses the core elements of mediatization theory in religion. These elements are the dating and measurement of mediatization, the secularization and the concept of ‘banal religion,’ the understanding of ‘religion’ and of ‘media,’ and the process of deterritorialization. This analysis questions the empirical evidence for and the theoretical consistency of the mediatization approach. Finally, some alternative research perspectives are presented.
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