Handbook of the Sociology of Religion


About The Event

Call for Abstracts

Religion in Contexts

Abstract Submission Deadline: September 30, 2016

It is the aim of the volume to collect contributions that contextualize religions in their worldwide multiplicity, their particular societal configurations and their dynamics of social transformation. We want to understand religion as a multi-dimensional concept comprising of religious beliefs, world views and practices as well as the richness of religious groups, parishes, organizations and professions characterized by varying hierarchical relations, norms and values systems of societal range. Additionally, religion is also relevant from a macro-perspective as a category of social belonging and social difference; this includes institutional settings as well as social teachings and the religious bodies of knowledge.

At large, the volume will gather and systematically discuss a wide range of contexts and their varying influences on religion. On the basis of selected empirical data, the contributions shall reveal the social mechanisms and processes by which religion is shaped, realized and made salient. By this, the volume will provide a theoretical reconstruction of varying social effects in various societal contexts and a critical input to the up-to-date sociology of religion. This includes the analysis of interdependencies with other social fields like politics or science as well as the intersection with other social categories of difference like gender, race or age.

We are looking for manuscripts that locate religion in spatial, functional and societal contexts: (i) spatial contexts may comprise of global, regional or local environments that influence the relationship between religion and society. (ii) Functional contexts may relate to law, politics and economics but also to social inequalities and social identities. (iii) Societal contexts are practice- and interaction-related and embedded in everyday life on the micro-level; they endorse organizations, networks and their hierarchical order on the meso-level and relate to societal discourses, world views, and values on the macro-level.

Our explicit aim is to emphasize the so far neglected perspective on religion arising from culturally and socially structured phenomena–religion in this regard is understood as neither ‘quasi-naturally’ given nor as a necessarily antecedent and independent category. By this, we want to question Eurocentric perspectives in the sociology of religion and instead, search for alternative accesses to compare religions and contribute to a better understanding of the social mechanisms that make (and maintain) religions salient.

Projected structure:

(I) Introduction: Contextualizing religion

(II) Religion in spatial contexts

Global contexts

Regional contexts

Local contexts

(III) Religion in social contexts

Religion and its political context

Religion and its legal contexts

Religion and contexts of economy and social inequality

Religion and its contexts of identity

(IV) Religion and the levels of inquiry

Religion in the context of everyday life

Religion in the context of organizations, networks and hierarchies

Religion in the context of structure and culture

The volume will be published by NOMOS end of 2017. Manuscripts should be submitted by 31.03.2017.

We are inviting for contributions of up to 30.000 characters (including bibliographical indications). Outline abstract of 500 words is 30.09.2016

Source: ISA’s Research Committee on the Sociology of Religion

  • Cost: Free
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