Israel Science Foundation Research Workshop

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Research Workshop of the Israel Science Foundation,

Bar Ilan University and Hadassah Academic College


Lived religion in context: ُُ

Ethnographic and comparative perspectives



This workshop sets outs to explore the study of lived religion from a comparative perspective. In the past two decades, the concept of lived religion has become a primary analytic key for understanding and interpreting religious life. Applied by now to a wide array of religious practices and experiences, the interest in lived religion reflects a newfound interest in the sociology of religion in ordinary people as religious subjects.

In this workshop, we ask about the theoretical and methodological implications of applying this perspective, whose origins are in the North American sociology of religion, to distinct social, cultural, and religious settings and geographical locations. How does a comparative approach contribute to a more nuanced understanding of different cases of lived religion, rooted in different social and religious settings? How do the different lived dimensions of the religious experience, its materiality, the affective investments it affords, and its embodied performance, manifest differently in distinct religious cultures? And what might be the methodological implications when applying this perspective to diverse cultural and social frameworks?

The workshop will take place at Bar Ilan University, located in the city of Ramat Gan, and in Hadassah Academic College in Jerusalem. It will convene senior and junior sociologists of religion, ethnographers, and religious studies scholars working on diverse topics related to lived religion. It will also include a half-day field trip in Jerusalem.


Organizers: Rachel Werczberger (Hadassah Academic College) and Shlomo Guzmen Carmeli (Bar Ilan University).

Workshop Program (PDF)