Focusing on the important relationship between the 'sacred' and the 'secular', this book demonstrates that it is not paradoxical to think in terms of both secular and sacred or neither, in different times and places. International experts from a range of disciplinary perspectives draw on local, national, and international contexts to provide a fresh analytical approach to understanding these two contested poles. Exploring such phenomena at an individual, institutional, or theoretical level, each chapter contributes to the central message of the book - that the ’in between’ is real, embodied and experienced every day and informs, and is informed by, intersecting social identities. Social Identities between the Sacred and the Secular provides an essential resource for continued research into these concepts, challenging us to re-think where the boundaries of sacred and secular lie and what may lie between.
’Religion is everywhere in the landscape of contemporary life, and takes the shape of the social vessel into which it is poured. Making sense of this requires intrepid ethnography, media-savvy, and a sturdy sense of the social dynamics of people on the move in a world that is anything but static. The contributors to Social Identities between the Sacred and the Secular capture the lively, protean character of modern religiosities with a keen sense of the religionist’s refusal to be one thing and not another. This will prove a very useful collection of first-rate studies.’ David Morgan, Duke University, USA