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The Catholic RevolutionNew  Wine, Old Wineskins, and the Second Vatican Council$
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Andrew Greeley

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780520238176

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520238176.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 28 June 2022

“Effervescence” Spreads from the Council to the World

“Effervescence” Spreads from the Council to the World

(p.61) Five “Effervescence” Spreads from the Council to the World
The Catholic Revolution

Andrew Greeley

Paul Wink

University of California Press

This chapter studies what happened at the Council, and the consequent sweeping away of the old structure. Melissa Jo Wilde invokes a theory of collective behavior to explain the astonishing events. The tradition of collective behavior theory and research is impressed by the frequently observed phenomenon of individuals merging into a group experience that is more powerful than the sum of the individual experiences. French sociologist Emile Durkheim suggested that the “effervescence” that affected the group seemed to be something that existed apart from the group. The chapter details the various explanations for the phenomenon of collective effervescence. One of the reasons for the sudden and dramatic revolution was that the resources available to support the old structures were not very strong. The wineskins were fragile and leaking already. Since the council, a large numbers of Catholics have been able to rationalize the apparent conflict between their Catholic allegiance and their dissent from Catholic sexual teaching.

Keywords:   effervescence, the council, Emile Durkheim, collective behavior theory, wineskins, sexual teaching

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