Diverse religious practices in Buenos Aires slums
Diversidad de prácticas religiosas en las villas de la ciudad de Buenos Aires
Suárez, Ana Lourdes
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FuenteDebates en sociología; No 44 (2017); 119-143
The article describes and analyses the diversity of religious practices of Buenos Aires slums inhabitants. The analysis is based on aggregate data obtained through a questionnaire applied to a representative sample of residents. First, we present a discussion on the concept of popular religiosity that sustains our understanding of religious practices. We then analyze the incidence and characteristics of 18 practices, comparing them, when possible, with data from the Atlas of religious diversity coordinated by Mallimaci (2013). We delve into more depth on some of them: making a promise to a devoted figure, and having a domestic altar. We also explore the weight of the mass media and internet as spaces that sustain some practices. We end the study analyzing self-perception on the degree of religious practice, and its change over time; concluding that it tends to be stable; a dimension that is «naturally» part of their lives. The guiding questions of this article are: What are the characteristics of religious practices? What do they express? How do they relate to institutional religious settings? How do they relate to the territories inhabited? How do religious practices and religious experience relate?.