Eugene O’Brien
Search for other papers by Eugene O’Brien in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
‘Belief shifts’
Ireland’s referendum and the journey from Gemeinschaft to Gesellschaft
Abstract only
Log-in for full text

This chapter examines the implications for Irish Catholicism that the ‘Yes’ vote in the May 2015 referendum on same-sex marriage may have for the social and cultural position of the Catholic church in contemporary Ireland and in the future. His analysis channels the thinking of Ferdinand Tönnies, an early German sociologist and a contemporary of Durkheim and Weber, who used the German words ‘Gemeinschaft’ and ‘Gesellschaft’ to distinguish between two fundamentally different structural paradigms for social relations. O’Brien sees marriage as a core ideological signifier of ideological hegemony, and using the fantasy fiction of Terry Pratchett’s satire on religion entitled Small Gods as a lens, he looks at the referendum as a significant turning point in the definition of marriage, and by extension, in the transformation Irish society from the organic community of the Gemeinschaft, to the more postmodern and pluralist notion of the Gesellschaft.

  • Collapse
  • Expand

All of MUP's digital content including Open Access books and journals is now available on manchesterhive.

 

Tracing the cultural legacy of Irish Catholicism

From Galway to Cloyne and beyond

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 411 305 37
Full Text Views 46 13 0
PDF Downloads 34 7 0