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Eating, Eschatology, Expectation: Fasting and Salvation in Serbian Orthodox Christianity

Lackenby, N; (2021) Eating, Eschatology, Expectation: Fasting and Salvation in Serbian Orthodox Christianity. Ethnos 10.1080/00141844.2021.1920623. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Practising Orthodox Christians in the central Serbian town of Kraljevo ‘work on’ their salvation by striving to live a ‘liturgical life’ structured around attending the Divine Liturgy, taking Divine Communion regularly, and fasting. However, in these committed churchgoing circles there is little explicit eschatological discussion about the Second Coming. The paper argues that the intensity of fasting practices in the liturgical everyday not only produce more proximate expectations, but also provide potential glimpses of the Divine now, thus removing the emphasis on a far-sighted eschatological vision. With a concerted focus on working on oneself in the present, the liturgical day-to-day does not need an abstract, sequential future to imbue it with meaning. But, just as such a lifestyle is a path to salvation, so too it produces social differentiation: churchgoing Orthodox find themselves out of kilter with contemporary Serbian society.

Type: Article
Title: Eating, Eschatology, Expectation: Fasting and Salvation in Serbian Orthodox Christianity
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/00141844.2021.1920623
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00141844.2021.1920623
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
Keywords: Fasting, Serbia, theosis, Orthodox Christianity, Christian temporality
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10129490
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