Religious Fundamentalism – A Misleading Concept?
Florian Zemmin has stated that »language not only describes and evaluates a given reality, but also helps to produce it.« The article shows that this statements holds very true in the case of religious fundamentalism. It shows that the perplexity about the Islamic Revolution in Iran of 1979 has led to parallel ties with American Protestant Fundamentalism at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th centuries. Other protests, in the name of religion, against modernity in the Western style were then also labelled as fundamentalist so that the term became a key concept to describe a global trend against modernity. In spite of very different local protest aims, religious fundamentalism is thus seen as an antimodern tendency in all major religions. Consequently, the concept neglects local forms of dissatisfaction with the status quo by creating a global trend which as such does not exist but is produced by the respective studies as stated by Zemmin.