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Religion on an Ordinary Day in Quebec: Cultural Christianity, “Threatening” Islam and the Supernatural Marketplace

In: Journal of Religion, Media and Digital Culture
Authors:
Mathilde Vanasse-PelletierUniversity of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, mathildevanassepelletier@gmail.com

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Solange LefebvreFull Professor, Institute for Religious Study, University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, solange.lefebvre@umontreal.ca

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Imane KhlifateDoctoral Student, Institute for Religious Study, University of Montreal, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, imane.khlifate@umontreal.ca

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Abstract

Is there such a thing as an “ordinary day”? Through the content analysis of four newspapers from the province of Quebec, Canada, for September 17, 2013, 2014 and 2015, we notice that religion and magic find a way to permeate not only news coverage, but also the less glamorous parts of newspapers such as obituaries and classified advertisements, making the content somewhat “extraordinary”.

Christianity is an important topic of discussion throughout all three years, both implicitly and explicitly, because of the Catholic history of Quebec. Islam is also very present in 2013–2015 because of major political debates about laïcité and religious symbols as well as international events involving Islamic extremism and the fear of terrorism. Finally, we find that magic is also on display, mainly through classifieds advertisements for supernatural services, which shows that conventional religion still tends to dominate the news, while magic slips through the crevasses of the less glamorous sections of the papers.

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