Publication: Religion and Change in Modern Britain

Religion and Change in Modern Britain
Edited by Linda Woodhead, Rebecca Catto

Published 14th February 2012 by Routledge

This book offers a fully up-to-date and comprehensive guide to religion in Britain since 1945. A team of leading scholars provide a fresh analysis and overview, with a particular focus on diversity and change. They examine:

  • relations between religious and secular beliefs and institutions
  • the evolving role and status of the churches
  • the growth and ‘settlement’ of non-Christian religious communities
  • the spread and diversification of alternative spiritualities
  • religion in welfare, education, media, politics and law
  • theoretical perspectives on religious change

The volume presents the latest research, including results from the largest-ever research initiative on religion in Britain, the AHRC/ESRC Religion and Society Programme. Survey chapters are combined with detailed case studies to give both breadth and depth of coverage. The text is accompanied by relevant photographs and a companion website.

CFP Association for the Sociology of Religion, Denver, Colorado 12-18August

2012 Annual Meeting

August 17-18 – Denver, Colorado

Religion and Social Change

Papers and discussion sessions on all themes within the sociology of religion are welcome, but especially those related to the meeting theme, including, but not limited to, the following: Religion is both an agent and a product of social change. Closely linked to many historical and global transformations, religion has served as both an opiate and an amphetamine for change. Indeed, most religious traditions are predicated upon the idea that conversion transforms the individual and widespread acceptance of religious principles results in a utopian society. Some religions attempt to produce or prevent change by influencing the wider discourse surrounding key moral and political debates; others promote programs at the local level; still others, viewing society as beyond repair, attempt to produce their own utopian sub-societies. Yet, religion is also the product of social changes that mold beliefs and transform religious institutions. We want to explore this complex relationship between religion and social change. To what extent do the characteristics of religious groups and their members determine the manner in which they attempt to enact change? Do religious groups have special advantages or disadvantages in their ability to foster social change as compared to secular groups and institutions? How do larger social changes influence the religious beliefs and actions of individuals and institutions?

Papers and discussion sessions on all themes within the sociology of religion are welcome, but especially those related to the meeting theme, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • religion and politics
  • religion and gender
  • religion and racial harmony
  • religion and science
  • religion and volunteering
  • religion and morality issues
  • religion and extremist behavior
  • utopian and millenarian movements in religion
  • religious charitable organizations
  • religious conversion, religious experiences and personal transformation
  • theoretical perspectives regarding religion and engagement with society


-Session Proposals are due by 31 March 2012

-Paper Proposals and Abstracts are due by 30 April 2012

SUBMISSION GUIDELINES: (1) Email your proposal to as a Word attachment. Place the title of your proposal first, then names, affiliations, and email addresses of all authors, then your abstract/proposal, all on one sheet of paper. (2) Limit paper abstracts to amaximum of 100 words. (3) 2012 membership in ASR is required for program consideration (one author, for multi-authored papers). Do not submit proposals prior to 1 January. PROGRAM CHAIR: Christopher Bader, Chapman University.


ASR makes available a limited number of travel assistance grants for members who are presenting papers at its annual meeting. These fall into two categories: student grants and grants for foreign scholars living outside of North America. Grants for students range up to $500.

Foreign scholar grants are subdivided between those living or working in ISA Category A or B countries and those living or working in ISA Category C countries. (The ISA geopolitical category scheme may be accessed at Note that ISA

membership is NOT required for consideration. ASR simply uses its scheme as the most universally recognized basis within the profession.) Grants for those in Category A and B countries are limited to $500. Grants for those in Category C countries may range up to $1,000. In no case will anyone receive a grant in excess of $1,000.

Applications should take the form of a letter submitted to the program chair along with the applicant’s program paper proposal. Applicants should state both the amount of their request to ASR and also indicate how they will fund that portion of their trip not funded by the

Gallagher Grant. It is acceptable to state that the remainder will come from the applicant’s personal funds. Applicants should understand that these grants are competitive and that the total amount of grants awarded seldom exceeds $5,000.

One-quarter of the grants may made by the Program Chair on his or her own initiative. The remainder of domestic Student awards are also made by the Program Chair based on applications. International award applications are vetted by the International Committee, to whom they are forwarded by the Program Chair. For 2012, the International Committee is composed of Prema Kurien (chair), Giuseppe Giordan, and Afe Adogame.

CFP: “Irreligion, Secularism and Social Change” Deadline for abstracts 13th February 2012

This CFP is the result of a discussion a few of us have been having about putting together an exploratory session at this year’s AAR, in the hope that we can create a group within the AAR yearly program to deal with irreligion/nonreligion and secularism topics going forward.

“Irreligion, Secularism and Social Change”

Exploratory session, American Academy of Religion annual meeting, Chicago, IL on Nov 17-20.

Society is always in flux, a fact that could hardly be missed in 2011, the year of the protester. As such, social change has become a hot topic in a variety of academic disciplines. Those dealing with religion are asking questions about how religious belief systems envision utopia, how religious institutions promote or stifle transformations of society, and how social change in turn transforms religion; but what about irreligious institutions, nontheistic belief systems and secularism? How do they relate to and interact with social change? This panel was born out of the belief that it is also important to investigate the relationship between social change and “the secular.” Paper topics may include but are not limited to nontheistic moral philosophies and worldviews, irreligious communities, institutions and individuals, or secularism as ideology and practice. We hope to get proposals from a wide array of disciplinary perspectives and papers will be selected based on thematic relevance and methodological diversity. If you are interested in participating please send an abstract of no more than 500 words to by the end of the day, Feburary 13, 2012.

Please note that this panel is also part of an effort to create an “Irreligion and Secularism” unit within the American Academy of Religion annual meeting program and is therefore being pitched to the AAR as an exploratory session. This means that once your paper is selected the panel still requires approval from the AAR program committee before it gets accepted for this year’s annual meeting.

For further details please contact, Per Smith: