PillarisationSo what was it?Pillarisation means is that society was divided into a number of political and religious groups, called zuilen("pillars"), and that there was a considerable degree of segregation between these pillars. Each pillar had its own institutions (schools, newspapers, political parties...) and members of different pillars rarely interacted with each other socially. Members of one pillar usually viewed the other pillars as different kinds of Scary Dogmatic Aliens, although the political leaders got along fine behind the screens. Depending on which historian you ask, there were three to five pillars in the Netherlands: •Catholics:The largest pillar, but still nowhere near a majority. Viewed by the other pillars as gullible "sheep" without much of an individual free will, who followed their "shepherds" (priests, bishops, and ultimately the Vatican) no matter what. •Protestants:The dominant group before pillarisation, who still had considerable influence but not as much as in the 17th and 18th centuries. They were divided into two
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