David Martin and the Sociology of Religion: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

David Martin and the Sociology of Religion

1st Edition

Edited by Hans Joas


216 pages

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Hardback: 9780815393306
pub: 2018-06-27
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781351188951
pub: 2018-06-14
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David Martin is a pioneer of a political sociology of religion that integrates a combined analysis of nationalism and political religions with the history of religion. He was one of the first critics of the so-called secularization thesis, and his historical orientation makes him one of the few outstanding scholars who have continued the work begun by Max Weber and Emile Durkheim. This collection provides the first scholarly overview of his hugely influential work and includes a chapter written by David Martin himself.

Starting with an introduction that contextualises David Martin’s theories on the sociology of religion, both currently and historically, this volume aims to cover David Martin’s lifework in its entirety. An international panel of contributors sheds new light on his studies of particular geographical areas (Britain, Latin America, Scandinavia) and on certain systematic fields (secularization, violence, music, Pentecostalism, the relation between sociology and theology). David Martin’s concluding chapter addresses the critical points raised in response to his theories.

This book addresses one of the key figures in the development of the sociology of religion, and as such it will be of great interest to all scholars of the sociology of religion.


'This rich collection provides a long-overdue assessment of the seminal work of David Martin within and beyond the sociology of religion. It covers the key topics of secularization, differentiation, boundaries between sociology and theology, and much more besides. A wide spectrum of experts is needed to provide a critical understanding of David Martin’s pioneering and far-reaching work. The result is impressive.'

Robin Gill, Editor of Theology and Emeritus Professor of Applied Theology at the University of Kent, UK.

Table of Contents

1 Introduction: More Weberian Than Weber? David Martin’s Political Sociology of Religion

Hans Joas

2 David Martin’s Theory of Secularisation

Anthony Carroll

3 Revising Secularization Theory‘s Paradigmatic Core – David Martin on General Processes, Basic Patterns and Causal Mechanisms of Differentiation between Religion and Politics

Matthias Koenig

4 The One and the Many Stories: How to Reconcile Sense-Making and Fact-Checking in the Secularization Narrative

Paolo Costa

5 Understanding Religion in Modern Britain: Taking the Long View

Grace Davie

6 Parallel Reformations in Latin America: A Critical Review of David Martin's Interpretation of the Pentecostal Revolution

José Casanova

7 David Martin on Scandinavia and Music

Pål Repstad

8 Taking Religion Back Out: On the Secular Dynamics of Armed Conflicts and the Potentials of Religious Peace Making

Andreas Hasenclever

9 Converting. A General Theory of David Martin

Michal Luczewski

10 Thinking With Your Life

David Martin

Bibliography of David Martin’s Work

About the Editor

Hans Joas is Ernst Troeltsch Professor for the Sociology of Religion at the Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany, and Professor of Sociology and Social Thought at the University of Chicago, USA. His previous publications include Faith as an Option (2014) and The Sacredness of the Person (2013).

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
RELIGION / General
RELIGION / Christian Theology / General
RELIGION / Christianity / General
RELIGION / Christianity / Pentecostal & Charismatic
RELIGION / Religion, Politics & State
RELIGION / Religious Intolerance, Persecution & Conflict
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology of Religion