The 2013 Jarvis Lecture on Christianity & Culture
Dr. José Casanova
Transformations in American Civil Religion and American Christianity
November 4 | 7pm | Wright Auditorium
José Casanova is one of the world's top scholars in the sociology of religion. He is a professor in the Department of Sociology at Georgetown University, and heads the Berkley Center's Program on Globalization, Religion and the Secular. He studied philosophy in Saragossa, Spain, received an M.A. in theology from the University of Innsbruck, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the New School for Social Research. He moved to Georgetown from the New School, where he served as a professor of sociology from 1987-2007. Casanova has published works on a broad range of subjects, including religion and globalization, migration and religious pluralism, transnational religions, and sociological theory. His critically acclaimed work, Public Religions in the Modern World (1994), has become a modern classic in the field and has been translated into five languages, including Arabic and Indonesian.
In that work, Casanova examines how religious traditions around the world, from Islamic fundamentalism to Catholic liberation theology, have made their way, often forcefully, out of the private sphere and into public life, resulting in the de-privatization of religion in the contemporary world. According to Casanova’s analyses, religious institutions no longer simply administer pastoral care to individual souls, but instead are increasingly challenging established social and political frameworks. In this respect, Casanova challenges post-Enlightenment assumptions regarding the relationship between modernity and secularization in religious movements throughout the world.,/p>
Casanova’s other publications include “Rethinking Secularization: A Global Comparative Perspective,” The Hedgehog Review (2006) and “The Long Journey of Turkey into Europe and the Dilemmas of European Civilization,” Constellations (2006). In 2012, Casanova was awarded the Theology Prize from the Salzburger Hochschulwochen in recognition of life-long achievement in the field of theology.