Contested privates: homosexuality and religion

Few issues are as fiercely debated in orthodox parts of the global church as homosexuality. More and more resistance toward sexual diversity functions as an identity marker for religion as much as its acceptance is heralded by liberal societies and their proponents. Parallel to the increasing visibility of sexual diversity, religious identity has become more and more privatized. This project charts the oppositional pairing of religion and homosexuality in public discourse (political debate, public advice and popular culture) in contemporary Dutch society. A historical (1945-2005) and international (Sweden, Serbia, Spain) comparison highlights the significance of the political and religious background configurations. In analyzing the conflicts around homosexuality, this project contributes to the understanding of the role of religion in contemporary society.

This NWO-funded project is a collaboration of the Amsterdam Center for the Study of Lived Religion (VU) and the Chair of Religion and Gender, Faculty of Humanities, Utrecht University. Researchers include Ruard Ganzevoort and Anne-Marie Korte (project leaders), Mariecke van den Berg, David Bos (post doc researchers), Marco Derks (PhD candidate).

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