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Title: Being Mormon in Ireland : an exploration of religion in modernity through a lens of tradition and change
Author: O'Brien, Hazel
ISNI:       0000 0004 7653 5263
Awarding Body: University of Exeter
Current Institution: University of Exeter
Date of Award: 2018
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This thesis is based on ethnographic data collected across two Mormon congregations in the Republic of Ireland. I explore the experiences of a religious minority who are part of a wider society experiencing rapid religious and social change. Engaging with concepts of tradition, continuity, and change, this research explores how members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints experience their status as a minority religion in modern Ireland. As part of a growing number of new religious movements in Ireland, Mormonism represents a simultaneous continuation and rupture of Ireland’s previous religious traditions. This research suggests that a continuing influence of Catholicism in Irish society shapes Irish Mormon perceptions of self, of others, and of faith. Yet, by identifying with a religion which is viewed in Ireland as a ‘foreign’ faith, Irish Mormons represent a clear break with previous religious tradition. Irish Mormons’ relationship with Mormonism as a global religion also demonstrates the complexity of continuity and change within modern religion. This research shows that Irish Mormons reject what they perceive as an Americanisation of Mormonism and often emphasise the uniquely Irish nature of Mormonism in Ireland. Thus, Irish Mormons are adapting Mormon tradition into new forms far from the Mormon heartland of Utah. This research concludes that Mormons in Ireland utilise complex and interconnected understandings of tradition, community, and Irishness to create and maintain a minority religious identity in modern Ireland.
Supervisor: Tyler, Katharine ; Farrimond, Hannah Sponsor: Waterford Institute of Technology
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Global Mormonism ; Mormon identity ; Religion in Modernity ; Irish Religion ; Minority Religion ; Tradition ; Collective Memory ; New Religious Movements ; The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints ; Ethnography