Bryan Turner (sociologist)

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Bryan Stanley Turner
Born 1945 (age 75–76)
Birmingham, UK
Residence US and Australia
Nationality British and Australian (Dual Citizen)
Institutions The City University of New York
Australian Catholic University

Bryan Stanley Turner is a British and Australian sociologist. He was born in January 1945 in Birmingham, England. Turner has held university appointments in England, Scotland, Australia, Germany, Holland, Singapore and the United States. He was a Professor of Sociology at the University of Cambridge (1998–2005) and Research Team Leader for the Religion Cluster at the Asian Research Institute, National University of Singapore (2005–2008).[1]

Turner is currently the Presidential Professor of Sociology and Director of the Committee on Religion at The City University of New York,[2] and Director of the Institute for Religion, Politics and Society at the Australian Catholic University. He is also faculty Associate of the Center for Cultural Sociology[3] at Yale University, Research Associate, GEMASS at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique,[4] Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia[5] and Member of the American Sociological Research Association.

Early life

Turner attended Harborne Collegiate School for Boys and George Dixon Grammar School. He went on to the University of Leeds, where he completed a first class honours degree in Sociology in 1966. He received his Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Leeds in 1970 with a thesis titled "The Decline of Methodism: an analysis of religious commitment and organisation". He has received several honorary degrees recognising his contributions to Sociology: Doctor of Letters at Flinders University in 1987, Master of Arts at the University of Cambridge in 2002 and Doctor of Letters at the University of Cambridge in 2009.


Professor Turner's research interests include globalisation and religion, concentrating on such issues as religious conflict and the modern state, religious authority and electronic information, religious consumerism and youth cultures, human rights and religion, the human body, medical change, and religious cosmologies.[6]

Turner wrote his first book Weber and Islam[7] in 1974 and has since established an international reputation for his work on religion, Max Weber and comparative sociology.[8] He is one of the world’s leading sociologists of religion;[better source needed] he has also devoted significant attention to sociological theory, the study of human rights, and the sociology of the body.[2]

He is the founding editor of the journals: Body & Society (with Mike Featherstone), Citizenship Studies, and Journal of Classical Sociology (with John O'Neill). He is also an editorial member of numerous journals including: British Journal of Sociology, European Journal of Social Theory, Contemporary Islam and Journal of Human Rights.[9]

He is the editor of two book series for Anthem Press: Key Issues in Modern Sociology and Tracts for Our Times; and with Gabriele Marranci he edits Muslims in Global Societies for Springer.

Professional recognition

Years Award or Recognition
1981 Morris Ginsberg Fellow, London School of Economics, University of London.
1987 Fellow of the Australian Academy of Social Sciences
1987–1988 Alexander von Humboldt Professorial Fellow, University of Bielfeld, Germany.
1995 Distinguished Visiting Professor, University of Helsinki, Finland.
2002–2005 Fellow, Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, UK.
2009 Member, American Sociological Research Association.
2009–2010 Alona Evans Distinguished Visiting Professor of Sociology at Wellesley College[10]
2011 Honorary Fellow of the Albanian Academy of Arts and Sciences
2015 Max Planck Research Award [11]

Selected bibliography

Year Monographs
2004 The New Medical Sociology. New York: Norton.
2006 Vulnerability and Human Rights. Penn State University Press
2008 Rights and Virtues. Political Essays on Citizenship and Social Justice. Oxford: Bardwell Press
2008 Body and Society. Explorations in Social Theory. London: Sage (third revised edition)
2009 Can we live forever? A sociological and moral inquiry. London: Anthem Press.
2011 Religion and Modern Society. Citizenship, Secularisation and the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Year Edited
2006 The Cambridge Dictionary of Sociology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
2009 The New Blackwell Companion to Social Theory. Oxford: Blackwell-Wiley.
2009 The Routledge International Handbook of Globalization Studies. London: Routledge.
2010 The New Blackwell Companion to the Sociology of Religion. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
2010 Secularization. (Four-Volume Set). UK: SAGE.
Year Joint Authored
2010 Turner B., Khondker H. Globalization East and West. SAGE: London.
2011 Susen, S., Turner, B. The Legacy of Pierre Bourdieu. Anthem.
2011 Turner, B., Arslan, B. Z. Shari'a and legal pluralism in the West. European Journal of Social Theory

14(2): 139–159.