‘Culture and Society’ is the theme of the Irish Jesuit quarterly Studies published this June the eighth. Social and Cultural issues are examined in the light of Christian values, with contributions on ‘Youth Culture’ ‘Fathers and Family Policy, the Media and Religion… ‘Culture and Society’ is the theme of the Irish Jesuit quarterly Studies published this June the eighth. Social and Cultural issues are examined in the light of Christian values, with contributions on ‘Youth Culture’ ‘Fathers and Family Policy, the Media and Religion and the limits of Multiculturalism, among others.
In a hard hitting editorial Fergus O’Donoghue, SJ claims that modern Irish culture is defined and articulated by a small group of people who are lapsed Christian and anti-clerical. “Much of the commentary overlooks what is really happening in our society as we embrace the neo-liberal consensus and free market capitalism” And he argues that, in our rapidly changing and fragmented society, politicians have lost their nerve as well as their way! “ In much of our political discourse self-righteousness has replaced Christian principles –indeed most politicians would be too embarrassed to declare that they are doing something from Christian motives…. this embarrassment comes from a naive multiculturalism…”
In his article on multiculturalism, journalist and historian Patrick West argues that the mantra ‘all cultures are equal’ prevalent here and in Britain is counterproductive and worsens race relations, Brian MacGabhann (of STAC: Stop TV Advertising at Children) claims that today’s teens no longer create their own culture they buy one ready made from the nearest designer store. “Youth has been rebranded to make it profitable and society has adopted a value system that relates individual self-worth directly to material possessions.” It was his young daughter who heard a classmate, talking about another girl, “What can you expect from someone who wears Adidas?”
Other contributors include Michael Rush, Dept of Social Studies UCD (Fathers and Family Policy), Michael Paul Gallagher SJ (professor of theology) and journalist and teacher Breda O’ Brien who finds hope for Ireland’s future in media terms in younger journalists who ‘have very little negative baggage regarding religion but sadly very little knowledge of it either!’