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Looking Askance at the Sacred

Looking Askance at the Sacred

Chapter:
(p.153) 6 Looking Askance at the Sacred
Source:
Landscapes of the Secular
Author(s):
Nicolas Howe
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226376806.003.0006

This concluding chapter considers the roles of defilement, desecration, and aversive affect in secular landscape discourse. It performs a close reading of a single line from Pope Francis' 2015 encyclical on the environment, Laudato Si', and it briefly examines a lawsuit over the public display of cross-shaped wreckage from the ruins of the World Trade Center. Tying together different threads from the previous chapters, it reflects on the paradoxical fragility and power of sacred space in a secular age, and it further explores the relationships among landscape, place, and religious diversity in America.

Keywords:   Pope Francis, desecration, World Trade Center, social memory, place

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