University of Bergen
Networking Spirituality: Ideology and Interaction within a New Age Network
The New Age movement not only represents new ideas, but has equally engendered new modes of social interaction in a religious context. Given the growth of ”unorganised spirituality” or ”network religiosity”, the dynamics of New Age networks would seem to deserve more scholarly attention. My PhD project in particular addresses the relationship between ideology and interaction within the New Age movement; How does interaction affect social relations and the transmission and development of ideas? To what extent, and in what way, do the values and religious ideas of different actors affect their way of interacting? What role do the different platforms of interaction – as mediums – play in this process?
Empirically, the project will focus on the Norwegian alternative scene. It will particularly emphasise actors involved in VisionWorks, which is a central forum for alternative spirituality, therapy, lifestyle and religion in Norway. I will both conduct interviews and analyse written sources such as magazines, event programmes, internet sites and web forums. By studying a varied empirical material within a comprehensive theoretical framework the project aims at enhancing our understanding of the rationale and modus operandi of New Age networks.
”Multireligious” actors? A quantitative study of the audience at Scandinavia’s largest alternative fair
Into the unknown. Paul Resen’s accounts of the conditions in the Norwegian Sami areas from 1706 to 1708