The Immanent Frame

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The Immanent Frame is a collective academic blog on secularism, religion, and the public sphere. Established in conjunction with projects on religion and the public sphere at the Social Science Research Council (SSRC), an independent not-for-profit research organization founded in 1923 and located in New York City, it is the first SSRC blog to involve multiple contributions from a number of leading scholars in the humanities and social sciences, rather than being associated primarily with the posts of any one individual blogger. The blog is edited by Jonathan VanAntwerpen, an SSRC program officer and research fellow.

Among other topics, The Immanent Frame is host to an ongoing discussion of A Secular Age, a book written by the philosopher Charles Taylor, and published in 2007 by Harvard University Press. The sociologist Robert Bellah has referred to A Secular Age as "one of the most important books to be written in my lifetime."[1] The blog includes original contributions on A Secular Age written by Robert Bellah, Wendy Brown, Charles Taylor, and others. Its name alludes to a central concept in Taylor's book.

In recent years secularism has become an important topic in the humanities and social sciences. Many scholars writing on the topic today begin with the premise that "secularism" is not simply the absence of religion, but rather an intellectual and political category that itself needs to be understood as a historical construction—although there continue to be important disagreements. Announcing the launch of the SSRC blog, the widely-read political blog Crooked Timber suggested that The Immanent Frame would help "broaden debate about these issues beyond the usual suspects."[2]


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