Welcome to the Committee for the Study of Religion


As incoming Chair of the Committee for the Study of Religion, I am pleased to welcome you to our renewed website, and even more so to our calendar of events and members.  As you can see on this site, each year we have a theme that informs the meetings, fellows, and activities of the Committee.  This year’s theme is: Religion, Class, and Social Order.

Each Wednesday from 12:30 to about 2 PM, we meet in room 5307 of the Graduate Center to hear a short presentation (often of works in progress) and always related to the year’s theme.  Commonly there is an engaging discussion by those in attendance, which includes our fellows (both graduate students and faculty) along with our many other participants and series of distinguished and engaging guests from a variety of academic disciplines.

At various points in the year, there is a large conference that engages our members along with distinguished guests from a variety of other universities, both national and international.  On our website, you can see some of those we have had in previous years.

Look here for information about upcoming events, and in time also about how to apply for fellowships for next year.

Our mandate is to focus on religion, in all its manifestations and perhaps one of the most important forces in our contemporary world.  Long after Emile Durkheim suggested, ““The old gods are aging or are already dead, and others are not yet born,” this generation is seeing the birth of those new gods – many of whom turn out to be not so different from the old ones.  We at the Committee are involved in figuring out how this is happening, what led up to it, and what it all means.  Come join us.

Samuel Heilman
Distinguished Professor of Sociology
Harold Proshansky Chair in Jewish Studies