Initial Project Overview

Lived Religion in Urban Context: A Study of Contemporary Experience of the Transcendent

This project explores how urban, contemporary persons, both believers and non-believers, from different social classes and generations experience transcendence in everyday life. How do people articulate their creativity within their religious/spiritual traditions and exercise their autonomy in different religious/spiritual practices? How have everyday life dynamics and religious competition affected lived religion?

We started exploring the quest for the divine at the borders of religious institutions and in relation to them, in 3 different cities which have experienced significant religious pluralization and competition: Córdoba, Argentina; Lima, Perú; and Montevideo, Uruguay.

Expanded Project Overview

This project, which initially focused solely on the experience of Latin Americans, from Argentina, Perú and Uruguay, expanded to other cultural contexts like the Basque Country in Spain and Rome in Italy.


We sampled people from different SES groups, self-identified as ‘nones’ (agnostics, non-affiliated, atheist, etc.), Catholics, Evangelicals (including main line Protestants, Evangelicals, neo-Evangelicals), and Other Traditions (including Jews, Muslims, Mormons, Afro cults, Native American spiritualities, New Age, etc.), collected ‘religious/spiritual narratives’ through in-depth interviews of life histories and ‘object-elicitation’ meetings about pictures of significant places, symbols, and meaningful artifacts.