Religion, Personality, and Social Behavior  book cover
1st Edition

Religion, Personality, and Social Behavior

Edited By

Vassilis Saroglou

ISBN 9781848726659
Published July 22, 2013 by Psychology Press
440 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Psychological interest in religion, in terms of both theory and empirical research, has been constant since the beginning of psychology. However, since the beginning of the 21st Century, partially due to important social and political events and developments, interest in religion within personality and social psychology has increased.

This volume reviews the accumulated research and theory on the major aspects of personality and social psychology as applied to religion. It provides a high quality integrative, systematic, and rigorous review of that work, with a focus on topics that are both central in personality and social psychology and have allowed for the accumulation of solid and replicated and not impressionist knowledge on religion. The contributors are renowned researchers in the field who offer an international perspective that is both illuminating, yet neutral, with respect to religion.

The volume’s primary audience are academics, researchers, and advanced students in social psychology, but it will also interest those in sociology, political sciences, and anthropology.

Table of Contents

V. Saroglou, Studying Religion in Personality and Social Psychology. Part I: Personality, Cognition, and Emotions. M.C. Ashton, K. Lee, Personality and Religiousness. C. Sedikides, J. Gebauer, Religion and the Self. W.M., Gervais, Religious Cognition. C.T. Burris, R. Petrican, Religion, Negative Emotions, and Regulation. P. Van Cappellen, B. Rimé, Positive Emotions and Self-transcendence. Part II: Social Behavior, Morality, and Intergroup Relations. J.L. Preston, E. Salomon, R.S. Ritter, Religious Prosociality: Personal, Cognitive, and Social Factors. W.C. Rowatt, T. Carpenter, M. Haggard, Religion, Prejudice and Intergroup Relations. S. Roccas, A. Elster, Values and Religiosity. Y.J. Li, A.B. Cohen, Religion, Sexuality, and Family. A. Malka, Religion and Domestic Political Attitudes around the World. R.D. Hayward, N. Krause, Religion, Mental Health, and Well-Being: Social Aspects. Part III: Religion in Context: Age, Gender, and Culture. P. Granqvist, Religion and Cognitive, Emotional, and Social Development. L.J. Francis, G. Penny, Gender Difference in Religion. K.A. Johnson, A.B. Cohen, Religious and National Cultures. Conclusion. V. Saroglou, Understanding Religion and Irreligion.

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Vassilis Saroglou is Professor of Psychology at the University of Louvain (UCL) and has been a visiting professor at Arizona State University and Fulbright scholar at the College of William and Mary. He has an extensive record of publications in personality, social, and cross-cultural psychology of religion, fundamentalism, and spirituality. He currently serves as Associate Editor of the International Journal for the Psychology of Religion. He is a recipient of the Early Career Award (2005) and the Mentoring Award (2013) of APA-Division 36, and the Quinquennial Godin Prize (2006) of the International Association for the Psychology of Religion.


"The intersection of religion, religiousness, individual differences in personality, and emotion, cognition, and social behavior is an important and timely subject for serious and sustained consideration by behavioral and cognitive scientists and others who study religious behavior. Saroglou (Psychology, University of Louvain, Belgium) has a long-running, wide-ranging interest in religion, and with this volume he goes a long way toward filling in the background and setting the agenda for such a consideration. … As befits such a comprehensive collection, the volume closes with a set of sensible conclusions and suggestions for future research. A vital addition to the literature. Summing Up: Essential. All readers." - R.R. Cornelius, Vassar College, in CHOICE, May 2014

"Reading this impressive synopsis of new scholarship on the social and personality psychology of religion, I said to myself: This is a terrific, state-of-the-art resource. I want this book on my shelf and in my college library." - David G. Myers, Ph.D., Hope College