Follow Us

Send us your news and events!

Mail them to
(No attachments!)

Subscribe to our News & Events Blog

Follow us on Twitter

Seminar at University of Agder, Kristiansand

The Repstad Seminar: Studying Religion in Contemporary Society

This open seminar takes the scholarly work of our colleague professor Pål Repstad as its point of departure. As he is about to retire from his ordinary position at the University of Agder, we give him and ourselves this opportunity to discuss some of his main scholarly interests and perspectives. The seminar concentrates on a further clarification of the social science contribution to the understanding of religiousness in late modern societies. The symposium will also discuss the relevance of social science studies of religion for other scholarly disciplines.

Pål Repstad is professor in sociology of religion at University of Agder, Norway. He has written extensively on changes in contemporary religion, especially about religion in the Nordic countries. Books by him have been translated into Swedish, Danish, English, Bosnian, Turkish and Persian. He has been editor of Nordic Journal of Religion and Society for many years. His most well-known book in English is An Introduction to the Sociology of Religion (2006, co-authored with Inger Furseth). He is an honorary doctor at Uppsala University.


Tuesday May 23, 2017

1015 Welcome

1025: Pål Repstad, University of Agder: Sociology of religion in contexts

1045: Jim Beckford, University of Warwick: Religious diversity: Sociological issues and perspectives

1130: Lunch

1215: Mia Lövheim, Uppsala University: Mediatization and religion: reflections on the usefulness of a difficult word

1245: Inger Furseth, University of Oslo: Religious complexity. Using complexity theory to understand multiple trends

1315: Anne Løvland, University of Agder: Social semiotics in the study of religion

1335: Break

1350: Ida Marie Høeg, University of Agder: Lived religion – a tool in theorizing varieties of religion, spirituality and non-religion? The case of new death rituals

1415: Jan-Olav Henriksen, MF Norwegian School of Theology/University of Agder and Paul Leer-Salvesen, University of Agder: Empirically informed theology

1500: Coffee Break

1530: Former Master and PhD candidates supervised by Pål Repstad present their work (10 minutes each):

Nils Justvik: Sports among Conservative Christians – from sin to a gift from God

Irene Trysnes: Camping with God. Roles and rituals at Christian summer festivals for young people

Tomas Rasmussen: Street Religion – Faith among Romanian beggars in Kristiansand

Kristina Grundetjern: The trek and the target. A pilgrimage in Norway

Bjarte Leer-Helgesen: Preaching to Mourners

Tale Steen-Johnsen: Is anyone listening? Religious leaders building peace in times of violent conflict

1645: Pål Repstad: Summing Up

1700: End of seminar

1900: Dinner


Pål Repstad has for many years been an eager collector of small commercial religious objects. After the seminar, an exhibition based on his collection will open in the university library, with a brief reflection from Pål about what such objects can tell us about contemporary religious trends. After that, there will be mingling and a dinner.



University of Agder, Campus Kristiansand


The University of Agder has agreements with the following hotels

  • Thon Hotel Kristiansand
  • Scandic Dyreparken Kristiansand
  • Comfort Hotel, Kristiansand
  • Scandic Kristiansand Bystranda
  • Radisson Blue Caledonien Krs
  • Clarion Hotel Ernst

When booking be sure to mention that you will participate at a conference at the University of Agder to get a reduced price.

A low-cost alternative may be

  • Sjøgløtt Hotell Kristiansand


Please register before April 1, 2017

There is no conference fee and the dinner is complementary of the University of Agder.

Contact and further information:

Hans Hodne, Head of Department

Telephone: 38 14 20 66

Mobile: 416 75 581