Continuity with the Past and Uncertainty for the Future

Religion in Danish Newspapers 1750–2018

  • Henrik Reintoft Christensen Aarhus University
Keywords: Danish newspapers, coverage of religion, secularization, religious diversity

Abstract

The article examines the newspaper constructions of religion in Danish
newspapers in a quantitative longitudinal analysis from 1750 to 2000
and a more qualitative analysis of recent news production from the
last forty years. For the longitudinal part, the database of the digitization of Danish newspapers project is used. Using the available tools
for quantitative data analysis, the article shows that the category of
religion and world religions has been visible in Danish newspapers
since 1750. The coverage of world religions is often related to the
coverage of international news. Overall, the article documents a remarkable continuity of the presence of religion. Examining the more
recent material qualitatively, the article shows that although many
religions have been historically visible in the news, they have most
recently become more frequent in the debate sections than in the
news sections. It is primarily Islam that is debated. This is connected
with a shift from religious diversity as part of foreign news coverage
to domestic news coverage, related to changes in the surrounding
Danish society. Nevertheless, the coverage of Islam also displays a
remarkable continuity.

Published
2019-12-10
How to Cite
Reintoft Christensen, H. (2019). Continuity with the Past and Uncertainty for the Future: Religion in Danish Newspapers 1750–2018. Temenos - Nordic Journal of Comparative Religion, 55(2), 201-24. https://doi.org/10.33356/temenos.87825