RAAC IUPUI > Search Resources > Modernity, Secularization, Religious Persistence, Spiritual Transformation

Modernity, Secularization, Religious Persistence, Spiritual Transformation

The key question we will explore is: What happens to religion under conditions of modernity, why, and how? This exploration first requires a more fundamental consideration of the nature of “modernity” and “religion” as concepts and realities themselves. It also involves thinking about what we might mean in saying that religion is, for instance, “strong,” “growing,” “declining,” or “losing authority.” Engaging the secularization debate also necessarily raises questions about human beings and their constitutional needs and tendencies, human societies and their requirements and operations, and basic sociological concerns with historical change, causal attributions, research design, data collection methods, measurement, and analysis. Throughout this seminar I want us to attend closely not only to associations between measured variables but also to the causal mechanisms theorized as promoting or preventing secularization. Working through the specific analytical issue of secularization therefore both grounds us solidly in debates at the heart of the field sociology of religion specifically, and engages us in a variety of important concerns that are crucial to consider for the doing of any good work in sociology generally. 0

Christian Smith

University of Notre Dame

Private College or University
Institution Type

Resource Type

Graduate Course
Class Type

Date Published

Religious Studies, Sociology

General Comparative Traditions
Religous Tradition

Pluralism/Secularism/Culture Wars

Link to Resource