Religion in the Contemporary World - TH342

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2020 to 2021
Spring 4 15 (7.5) DR L Lee checkmark-circle


The curriculum will be structured to introduce students to a range of key theories and debates which provide a basic framework for the social and cultural study of contemporary religion. Each session will introduce students to a particular theory or debate, using panel presentations in the seminars to get a small group to present their initial understanding and questions of relevant introductory literature. Throughout the module, students will be helped to see possible connections between these various theories and debates, as well as think about current issues to which these theories and debates might be relevant.


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

Total Contact Hours: 20

Method of assessment

Essay (2,000 words) – 50%
Examination (2 hours) – 50%

Indicative reading

Indicative Reading List

Davie, G. (2007). The Sociology of Religion. London: Sage
Furseth, I. & Repstad, P. (2006). An Introduction to the Sociology of Religion. Aldershot: Ashgate
Hinnells, J. (2010). The Routledge Companion to the Study of Religion (2nd edition). London and New York: Taylor & Francis Group
Woodhead, L. et al. (2009). Religions in the Modern World (2nd edition). London and New York: Routledge

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

Articulate clearly core concepts and arguments in key theories and debates in the social and cultural study of contemporary religion.
Articulate clearly relevant criticisms of key theories and ideas, and evaluate the validity of these.
Demonstrate some understanding of how different theories or accounts of religion in the contemporary world could be understood in relation to each other.
Identify ways in which particular theories or debates may be relevant for specific case examples in contemporary culture and society.


  1. Credit level 4. Certificate level module usually taken in the first stage of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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