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«The truth and her shadow»: anti-modern rhetoric on the pages of the Galiсian religious journals of the second half of the XIX — early XX century


In the XIX century and the first half of XX century, scientists A. Comte, M. Weber, H. Spencer, E. Durkheim, G. Simmel, and Ch. Cooley developed a theory explaining the social reality in which a person exists. The result of their work was a theory of modernization that describes a transition from the traditional to the modern society. Further on, due to various historical vicissitudes, the theory of modernization has undergone significant changes. In the first half of the XX century universal theory of modernization has been criticized. By shaping a new approach to the study of global transformations in society, scientists began considering cases of nonlinear progress or regression, since the model of the Western society’s functioning does not always adequately apply to the description of the functioning of other societies. Among the presumable counterpoints in the history of civilization, which scientists define as the beginning of modernity, are The Age of Discovery, The Industrial Revolution, and The French Revolution. Specifically, the French Revolution has significantly influenced the process of secularization of the European society, and contributed to the diminished presence of the Catholic Church on the international political scene, as well 86 as a gradual removal of religion from the life of modern human. The media played a significant role in reforming the socio-political, cultural and economic dimensions of the Western society, as the press was an important means of promoting modernization ideas. At the same time, the religious press was a key platform of criticism of modernization. At the end of the XIX — early XX centuries, a number of articles there were published on the topic of modernization in the secular and religious spheres, on the pages of the Lviv religious journals: «Ruskii Sion», «Dushpastyr», «Nyva». The authors of the «Nyva» journal in their publications rested upon the concept of modernism put forward by the Vatican. The latter concept concerned the young generation of Catholic theologians in Italy, France, the United Kingdom, and Germany. They were united by their shared views concerning the Christian Church’s status in a changing world. Catholic reformers sought to revise the Catholic Church doctrine, taking into account the relevant trends of subjectivism and criticism of that time. The authorship of the «Ruskii Sion» and «Dushpastyr» criticized the ideas of reducing the influence of religion in science, culture and politics. The authors of these journals argued that the enemy of modern society is not the Church, but speculative modernism, which is a source of false values. On the contrary, the church is a deterrent for the modern political and economic system absorbing human. We conclude that it is incorrect to presume that modern Ukraine (with the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church as one of the major denominations) was molded under the influence of religion, gi ven that the key processes of modernization (urbanization, industrialization, and so on) were accomplished accordingly to the model diverging with the Catholic, Christian, ideals. Therefore, the question of the peculiarities of the scenario of the modernization of the Ukrainian society and the role played by religion and the religious press in this process remains open.

Keywords: religious press, modernization, civilization, secularization, Christianity, Catholicism, Church document, religious modernism.

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