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If sex were a factor… The Securitate Archives and issues of morality in documents related to religious life
The issue of morality is a vector in the analysis of the archival documents related to religion in communism. When the veil of privacy is lifted and the secret is no more, a rich picture unfolds for the researcher. Blackened names, the minimal protection offered to the actors that surface in surveillance files will do little in affording the subject of such files the privacy his/her actions were thought to have been acted in. For clergy and church members alike the moral stick they are measured against is higher than for the rest. It was self-imposed in many cases. Documents of the CNSAS archives on religion abound with stories about sexuality in many forms. Judges of the morality of the life of “God’s men” the Securitate officers will highlight the failures of the clergy based on guidelines that pertain to the church rather than the Securitate. This article is an overview of the way in which morality permeated the Securitate documents on religious life in communist Romania. How it was used and the reasons behind it. It answers questions related to the disappearance of the morality standard in other archives that dealt specifically with religion in communism.
This research is part of the project Creative Agency and Religious Minorities: Hidden Galleries in the Secret Police Archives in Central and Eastern Europe. The project has received funding from the European Research 2020 research and innovation programme No. 677355.
Secret police , Communism , Securitate , Archives , Romania
Șincan, A. (2021) 'If sex were a factor… The Securitate Archives and issues of morality in documents related to religious life', in Kapaló, J. A. and Povedák, K. (eds)., The Secret Police and the Religious Underground in Communist and Post-Communist Eastern Europe, Routledge, pp. 302-315. doi: 10.4324/9780429331466
This is an Accepted Manuscript of a book chapter published by Routledge in The Secret Police and the Religious Underground in Communist and Post-Communist Eastern Europe on 13 August 2021, available online: http://www.routledge.com/9780367279998