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Department ofSociology

Stories

The Sociology Quarterly cover, Winter 2020

The Sociology Quarterly cover, Winter 2020

Spirituality among scientists

Assistant Professor Di Di’s recently published article examines how non-religious scientists construct spirituality in different national contexts

Assistant Professor Di Di’s recently published article examines how non-religious scientists construct spirituality in different national contexts

Di Di recently published an article titled, “Alternative Spirituality among Global Scientists,” in The Sociological Quarterly as the first author. This research examines how non-religious scientists construct spirituality in different national contexts, focusing on academic physicists and biologists. Two research questions guide the analyses: How do scientists construct an alternative spirituality and to what extent are their constructions conditioned by the contexts in which they live and work? The authors rely on surveys of 6,470 scientists in four national/regional contexts and on interviews with 65 self-identified spiritual but not-religious scientists. Findings reveal that alternative spirituality is more prevalent among scientists in Taiwan and France than in the UK and the US. Second, findings disclose that the construction of spirituality redefines the cultural meanings bundled with religion in these respective contexts. This research helps to explain how the construction of spirituality is changing the face of religion in different societal contexts. Other authors of this article include Robert A. Thomson at the University of Alabama in Huntsville as well as Simranjit Khalsa and Elaine Howard Ecklund at Rice University.