The International Society for Media, Religion and Culture (ISMRC)

Religion, as humanity’s oldest expression of values, identity and community, has always been a mediated practice. In contemporary society religious ideas are communicated, learned, represented, enacted and resisted through various forms of media. Religion circulates through social media, is discussed in the news and becomes a source of imagery for film and television.

The International Society for Media, Religion and Culture (ISMRC) was founded in 2010 out of a series of conferences on the interplay between media, religion and culture starting in 1994. Today the ISMRC is a vibrant research community of scholars with a large variety of international, disciplinary and religious backgrounds, covering topics such as journalism on religion; religion, popular culture and entertainment; and digital religion.

The ISMRC organizes biennial conferences and the next conference was planned to be held at the Sigtuna Foundation in August 2020. The conference is postponed to August 2021.


The twelfth biennial conference on Media, Religion and Culture

Rethinking Media, Religion and Secularities

Sigtunastiftelsen, 3-6 August 2021

The globalization of our lifeworld has brought attention to how we think about religion and non-religious contexts. The existence of secularity in contemporary society and culture is contested in many fields in which scholars of media, religion and culture studies engage. The 2021 ISMRC conference theme “Rethinking Media, Religion and Secularities”, seeks to interrogate these debates and the role media plays in communicating and mediating secularity in contemporary society.  The conference, which represents the biennial meeting of the International Society for Media, Religion and Culture, will explore these issues from a range of disciplinary perspectives. International participants from such disciplines as media studies, journalism, religious studies, anthropology and sociology of religion, as well as history, literature and public policy are welcome.

Keynote speakers include:

Professor Linda Woodhead, Lancaster University
Professor Marwan Kraidy, University of Pennsylvania
Associate Professor Titus Hjelm, University of Helsinki

After careful consideration of the current and projected conditions related to the COVID-19 global pandemic, the conference committee have decided to restructure the conference as a hybrid event. The on-site conference will take place August 3rd-6th, 2021 at Sigtunastiftelsen in Sweden. This will be accompanied by online panel options and webcast sessions from Sigtuna.

More information on the conference and registration at