September 22, 2021
The twentieth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks represents an opportunity to rethink the challenges and possibilities of religion in world affairs, according to a Berkley Center panel held on September 20, 2021.
José Casanova is one of the world's top scholars in the sociology of religion and a senior fellow at the Berkley Center, where his work focuses on globalization, religions, and secularization. He is also professor emeritus at Georgetown University, where he previously taught in the Department of Sociology and the Department of Theology and Religious Studies. During 2017 he was the Kluge Chair in Countries and Cultures of the North at the U.S. Library of Congress' John W. Kluge Center, where he worked on a book manuscript on Early Modern Globalization through a Jesuit Prism. He has published works on a broad range of subjects, including religion and globalization, migration and religious pluralism, transnational religions, and sociological theory. His best-known work, Public Religions in the Modern World (University of Chicago Press, 1994), has become a modern classic in the field and has been translated into several languages, including Japanese, Arabic, and Turkish. In 2012, Casanova was awarded the Theology Prize from the Salzburger Hochschulwochen in recognition of his life-long achievement in the field of theology.
Casanova’s most recent research has focused primarily on two areas: globalization and religion, and the dynamics of transnational religion, migration, and increasing ethno-religious and cultural diversity. His books in this area include Islam, Gender, and Democracy in Comparative Perspective, co-edited with Jocelyne Cesari (Oxford University Press, June 2017), Beyond Secularization: Religious and Secular Dynamics in Our Global Age (Spirit and Letter, 2017, in Ukrainian), and Jesuits and Globalization: Historical Legacies and Contemporary Challenges (Georgetown University Press, 2016), co-authored by the Berkley Center’s Thomas Banchoff. He has also published several articles on the subject, including "Global Religious and Secular Dynamics: The Modern System of Classification" in Brill Research Perspectives in Religion and Politics (2019), “Nativism and the Politics of Gender in Catholicism and Islam” in Gendering Religion and Politics: Untangling Modernities (Palgrave, 2009), and “Public Religions Revisited” in Religion: Beyond the Concept (Fordham University Press, 2008).
Casanova holds a B.A. in philosophy from the Seminario Metropolitano, M.A. from the University of Innsbruck in theology, and M.A. and Ph.D. in sociology from the New School for Social Research.