Research Methods for the study of religion

An online training resource

Indicative bibliography

This bibliography is not intended to provide an exhaustive overview of this field, but to identify a range of key texts from different disciplines that can inform the study of lived ethics across different social and cultural contexts. Whilst providing a range of disciplinary and theoretical perspectives, the following texts could therefore be used as a platform on which to build further reading.

Alexander, J.C. 2003. The Meanings of Social Life: a Cultural Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press.

Appiah, K.A. 2007, Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a world of strangers. London: Penguin.

Back, L. 2007. The Art of Listening. Oxford: Berg.

Bauman, Z. 2000. Modernity and the Holocaust. New York: Cornell University Press.

Bauman, Z. 1988. Freedom. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Bellah, R (Ed.). 1973. Emile Durkheim on Morality and Society: Selected Writings. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Bender, C and Taves, A. 2012. What Matters?: Ethnographies of Value in a Not So Secular Age. New York: Columbia University Press.

Bennett, J. 2001. The Enchantment of Modern Life: Attachments, Crossings and Ethics. Princeton, N.J: Princeton University Press.

Boothroyd, D. 2013. Ethical Subjects in Contemporary Culture. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Brink, D. 1989. Moral Realism and the Foundations of Ethics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Critchley, C. 2007. Infinitely Demanding: Ethics of Commitment, Politics of Resistance. London: Verso. 2

Das, V. 2007. Life and Words: Violence and the Descent into the Ordinary; Foreword by Stanley Cavell. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Durkheim, E. 2001 [1912]. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life, trans. By Cosman, C. Oxford World Classics.

Fassin, D. 2008. Beyond Good and Evil: Questioning the Anthropological Discomfort with Morals. Anthropological Theory 8(4):333-344.

Fassin D. 2012. A Companion to Moral Anthropology. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell.

Faubion, J.D. 2001 Toward an Anthropology of Ethics: Foucault and the Pedagogies of Autopoiesis. Representations 74:83-104.

Faubion. J.D. 2011. An Anthropology of Ethics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Foucault, M. 1997. Ethics: Subjectivity and Truth. Volume 1. New York: The New Press.

Foucault, M. 1986. On the Genealogy of Ethics: An Overview of Work in Progress, in P. Rabinow, ed., The Foucault Reader. London: Penguin.

Foucault, M. 2010. The Government of Self and Others. trans. G. Burchell, ed. F. Gros Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Garber, M., Hanssen, B. and Walkowitz, R.L. (Eds.) 2000. The Turn to Ethics. London: Routledge.

Hauerwas, S. 1981. A Community of Character: Toward a Constructive Christian Social Ethic. Durham, NC: University of Notre Dame Press.

Heintz, M. (Ed.). 2009. The Anthropology of Moralities. New York: Berghahn Books.

Hirschkind, C. 2006. The Ethical Soundscape: Cassette Sermons and Islamic Counterpublics: New York: Columbia University Press.

Hitlin, S. and Vaisey, S. (Eds.) 2010. Handbook of the Sociology of Morality. New York: Springer.

Howell, S. (Ed.) 1996. The Ethnography of Moralities. London: Taylor and Francis. 3

Joas, H. 2000 The Genesis of Values. G. Moore, transl. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

Joyce, R. 2001. The Myth of Morality. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Laidlaw, J. 2002. ‘For an Anthropology of Ethics and Freedom’. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute 8(2):311-332.

Lambek, M. 2000. The Anthropology of Religion and the Quarrel between Poetry and Philosophy. Current Anthropology 41(3):309-320.

Lambek, M. (Ed.) 2010. Ordinary Ethics: Anthropology, Language, and Action. New York: Fordham University Press.

Lamont, M. 2000. The Dignity of Working Men: Morality and the Boundaries of Race, Class and Immigration. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Lynch, G. 2012. The Sacred in the Modern World: A Cultural Sociological Approach. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lynch, G. 2012. On the Sacred. London: Acumen.

MacIntyre, A. 2007. After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory. 3rd edition. Durham, NC: University of Notre Dame Press.

Mackie, J.L. 1977. Ethics: Inventing Right and Wrong. London: Penguin.

Mahmood, S. 2005. Politics of Piety: the Islamic Revival and the Feminist Subject. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Meskimmon, M. 2010. Contemporary Art and the Cosmopolitan Imagination. London: Routledge.

Nietzche, F.W. 1994. [1887] On the Genealogy of Morality: A Polemical Tract, trans. by Diethe, C. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Norris, A.J. (Ed.). 2006. The Claim to Community: Essays on Stanley Cavell and Political Philosophy. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 4

Nussbaum, M. C., 1990. Love's Knowledge: Essays on Philosophy and Literature, New York: Oxford University Press.

Robbins, J. 2012. On Becoming Ethical Subjects: Freedom, Constraint and the Anthropology of Morality, Anthropology of This Century, 5. Available from: (Accessed 31 August 2013).

Robbins, J. 2007. Between Reproduction and Freedom: Morality, Value, and Radical Cultural Change. Ethnos 72(3):293-314.

Robbins, J. 2009 Value, Structure, and the Range of Possibilities: A Response to Zigon. Ethnos 74(2):277-285.

Rottshaefer, William. 1999. “Moral Learning and Moral Realism: How Empirical Psychology Illuminates Issues in Moral Ontology,” Behaviour and Philosophy 27: 19-49.

Schwitzgebel, E. 2009. Do ethicists steal more books? Philosophical Psychology, 22 (6), 711-725.

Shafer-Landau, R. 2003. Moral Realism: A Defense. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Smith, M. 1994. The Moral Problem. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers.

Taylor, C. 2007. A Secular Age. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Williams, R. 2002. Writing in the Dust: Reflections on 11th September and its Aftermath. London: Hodder and Stoughton.

Wuthnow, R. 1989. Meaning and Moral Order: Explorations in Cultural Analysis. Berkeley: University of California Press.

Yan, Y. 2009. The Good Samaritan’s New Trouble: A Study of the Changing Moral Landscape in Contemporary China. Social Anthropology 17(1):9-24.

Yan, Y. 2011. How Far Away Can We Move From Durkheim? – Reflections on the New Anthropology of Morality. Anthropology of this Century 5

Zigon, J. 2007. Moral Breakdown and the Ethical Demand: A Theoretical Framework for an Anthropology of Moralities. Anthropological Theory 7(2):131-150.

Zigon, J. 2009. Phenomenological Anthropology and Morality: A Reply to Robbins. Ethnos 74(2):286-288.

Zigon, J. 2009. Within a Range of Possibilities: Morality and Ethics in Social Life. Ethnos 74(2):251-276.

C&DO Web Content and Editorial Team - © University of Kent

The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T: +44 (0)1227 764000

Last Updated: 13/06/2014