Family Resemblances Twixt Implicit Religion and Post-modernity

A Fecund Framework for Engaging New Times


  • William J. F. Keenan Liverpool Hope University



implicit religion, liquidity, post-modernity, post-secular, sacrality, “third way”


This article explores parallels and convergences between implicit religion and post-modernity. The elective affinity between them is considered as a constructive combined “take” on late modern religion, culture and society. The aim is primarily to identify some overlap, some family resemblances, between key post-modern concepts and a number of the central themata of implicit religion, construed as a perspective or point of view on the human social and cultural condition. Drawing upon a variety of contributors to post-modern theory and implicit religion studies, this meta-analysis illuminates ways in which the “third way” conception of sacrality (cf. Bailey), inherent in the implicit religion (IR) perspective, resonates with the “liquidity” (cf. Bauman) of post-modernity (POMO). This holistic IR-POMO point of view, it is suggested, offers a challenging heuristic alternative to the “static polarities” (cf. Elias) of “gnostic thought” (cf. Jonas), and a “post-secular” mode of creative resistance to modernist hyper-secularism.

Author Biography

William J. F. Keenan, Liverpool Hope University

Visiting Professor of Sociology of Religion and Culture, Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool.


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How to Cite

Keenan, W. J. F. (2012). Family Resemblances Twixt Implicit Religion and Post-modernity: A Fecund Framework for Engaging New Times. Implicit Religion, 15(1), 5–24.