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Disaffiliation and individualisation

Most Swiss are born into one of the two major Christian Churches, that is to say that they are baptised and formally raised as Protestants or Catholics. However, since religious socialisation has less and less influence on individual beliefs and practices today, Switzerland is witnessing a considerable movement of disaffiliation. It should be pointed out that in most cantons this comes with the advantage of not having to pay the church tax.

Lastly, in our modern society, religion is slowly becoming a malleable good used by individuals independent of their membership group. The weakening of the national Churches’ influence reinforces the increased gap that can be noticed between individual practices and group standards. People can belong without believing, believe without belonging, customise their beliefs, leave the Church, and so forth.

Sources of data:
- Projet FNSRS Nr. 12-52643.97 : Religion et lien social : construction et régulation des mobilisations religieuses. Directeur de projet: Roland J. Campiche; Basis: Representative survey, 1999.
- Campiche, Roland, Dubach, Alfred et al., Croire en Suisse(s). Lausanne: éditions l’Age d’Homme, 1992. Basis: representative survey, 1989.

D 8 October 2012    AJoëlle Sanchez AJörg Stolz

CNRS Unistra Dres Gsrl

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