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Secularisation and Religion in Sociology

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About this Course

About the Course

In this course, Professor Grace Davie (University of Exeter) explores thinking about secularisation and religion in Sociology. In the first module, we think about the centrality of secularisation in the theories of three “founding fathers” of the discipline – Karl Marx, Max Weber, and Émile Durkheim. The second and third modules examine the development of secularisation theory in the twentieth century, including the “strong” version outlined by Bryan Wilson and Steve Bruce, and the context-specific approach advocated by David Martin and Professor Davie. In the fourth module, we consider global perspectives which challenge the idea of secularisation, before turning in the fifth to whether it is necessary to rethink previous ideas about religion and secularisation. In the final module, we look at some important current trends and think about possible futures for religion.

About the Lecturer

Professor Grace Davie is Professor Emeritus in Sociology at the University of Exeter. She is a leading sociologist of religion and has written widely on religion in the modern world. Her publications include Religion in Public Life: Levelling the Ground (2017), Religion in Britain: A Persistent Paradox (2015), and The Sociology of Religion: A Critical Agenda (2013).

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