Conflict-generating potential of religious settings among megapolis inhabitants: based on a St.Petersburg’s study




religiosity, practices, tolerance, consensus, religious conflicts, mass media


The public opinion monitoring results reveal contradictions in the attitudes towards the Orthodox organizations. On the one hand, the church activities get high approvals; on the other hand, the media depict a contrasting image of the ROC’s perceptions in the news stories. Due to media dramatization any religious contradictions or the ROC activities can take the form of a conflict. Generally, religious differences do not lead to conflictsthis happens only if religious issues are viewed from political and economic perspectives where a struggle for resources takes place. The conceptual analysis of the data obtained allows the author to single out three groups of respondents: «religious zealots», «traditional majority», and ‘the indifferent». The key criterion of assignment to a certain group is to assess the importance of religious worldviews and religious participation for self-identification.The author concludes that the megapolis inhabitants’ religious affiliation and worldviews in and of themselves have low conflict potential, and their effects are obviously exaggerated both in the sociological studies and the modern mass media.