Bryan Turner (sociologist)

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Bryan Turner
Bryan Stanley Turner

(1945-01-16) 16 January 1945 (age 78)[1]
NationalityBritish, Australian
Occupation(s)scholar, professor
TitlePresidential Professor[2]
Academic background
Alma materUniversity of Leeds
ThesisThe Decline of Methodism[3] (1970[3])
Academic work
Sub-disciplineSociology of religion
InstitutionsThe Graduate Center, CUNY, University of Western Sydney[2]

Bryan Stanley Turner (born 1945) 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).[4]

Turner is currently Professor of the Sociology of Religion at the Institute for Religion, Politics and Society at the Australian Catholic University. He is also faculty Associate of the Center for Cultural Sociology[5] at Yale University, Research Associate, GEMASS at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique,[6] Fellow of the Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia[7] and Member of the American Sociological Research Association.

Early life[edit]

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 sociological theory, sociology of 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.[8]

Turner wrote his first book Weber and Islam[9] in 1974 and has since established an international reputation for his work on religion, Max Weber and comparative sociology.[10]

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.[11]

He is the editor of two book series for Anthem Press: Key Issues in Modern Sociology and Tracts for Our Times; and also of Religion in Contemporary Asia for Routledge.

Professional recognition[edit]

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[12]
2011 Honorary Fellow of the Albanian Academy of Arts and Sciences
2015 Max Planck Research Award[13]

Selected bibliography[edit]

Year Monographs
1974 Weber and Islam. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd.
1994 Orientalism, Postmodernism and Globalism. London: Routledge.
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.
2010 The Sociology of Islam: Collected Essays of Bryan S. Turner. (with Kamaludeen Mohamed Nasir). UK: Ashgate.
Year Joint Authored Monographs
2002 June Edmunds and Bryan Turner. Generations, Culture and Society. UK: Open University Press.
2010 Kamaludeen Mohamed Nasir, Alexius Pereira and Bryan Turner. Muslims in Singapore: Piety, Politics and Policies. Routledge: London.
2010 Bryan Turner and Habibul Khondker. Globalization East and West. SAGE: London.
2014 Kamaludeen Mohamed Nasir and Bryan Turner. The Future of Singapore: Population, Society and the Nature of the State. Routledge: London.


  1. ^ "Turner, Bryan S." Library of Congress Name Authority File. Library of Congress. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  2. ^ a b "Professor Bryan Turner". Religion and Society Research Center. University of Western Sydney. Archived from the original on 5 November 2016. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  3. ^ a b Turner, Bryan S. (1970). The Decline of Methodism: An Analysis of Religious Commitment and Organisation (PDF) (PhD thesis). University of Leeds. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
  4. ^ "NUS: ARI > About ARI > People". Archived from the original on 12 June 2012. Retrieved 11 November 2011.
  5. ^ Center for Cultural Sociology – Yale University – Archived 14 March 2011 at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Centre national de la recherche scientifique –
  7. ^ Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia (ASSA) – "Profile of ASSA Fellow: Professor Bryan Turner". Archived from the original on 1 March 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2011.
  8. ^ World Who's Who –
  9. ^ Weber and Islam Archived 18 March 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  10. ^ Centre for the Study of Contemporary Muslim Societies –
  11. ^ CSCMS Profile –
  12. ^ Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia "Profile of ASSA Fellow: Professor Bryan Turner". Archived from the original on 1 March 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2011.
  13. ^ "Award for two pioneering thinkers in the fields of religion and modernity - Max Planck Society".