Contemporary fundamentalist Christianity in Finland: the variety of religious subjectivities and their association with values

Mika Lassander, Peter Nynäs

Abstract


In sharp contrast to both academic and public expectations on secularisation, religious fundamentalism has lately exhibited vitality both socially and culturally. This raises questions regarding its characteristics and nature; and from the increasing academic interest a more definite and nuanced understanding of its defining features has emerged. In this article, however, we address the internal diversity of religious fundamentalism. The findings we report are from a mixed-method study of Christian fundamentalism in Finland. The methods we used were the Schwartz’s value survey using the PVQ-R questionnaire with Wulff’s Faith Q-sort based on Q-methodology. We explore both values and religious subjectivities and the potential relationship between these. Our results indicate that contemporary religious fundamentalism should not be comprehended as a singular trajectory with some defining internal features, but rather as a negotiation between a diversity of individual motives and external and contextual influences. This finding can shed further light on the potential variation and change of contemporary fundamentalism in different contexts.

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