EARS, the European Academy on Religion and Society, is a European network of Departments and/or Faculties of Theology and/or Religious Studies. Its goal is to make academic knowledge in the domain of religion available to the society at large, being aware and convinced of the importance of such knowledge in our modern society.
Therefore, within the framework of EARS, the participating universities and their theologians cooperate at different levels, seeking to make their knowledge visible to society and relevant for the public domain. EARS does not focus on theology and religious studies as such, but aims to interpret and to explain societal issues from a theological perspective. Such a perspective should be understood as a focus on issues such as religious normativity, mechanisms of inclusion and exclusion, in relationship to secularity, religious attitudes towards gender and identity etc. In this regard, EARS realises that sometimes raising questions is more important than finding answers. In that sense, EARS intends to raise the big questions, rephrase and reframe them, and bring them to the fore. To do so, EARS organises many activities that demonstrates the relevance of a theological approach to societal issues.
EARS has a large variety of activities, which you can find under the button ‘activities’. In these activities, EARS tries to reveal and to preserve the complexity of the issues our society is dealing with and make them understandable. EARS intends to further the nuances and subtleties of the societal debates, without relativizing the difficulty of these topics.
EARS has a non-confessional background. Though the members mostly have their origins within the Christian tradition, they address religion from a non-confessional and non-denominational standpoint. EARS addresses religion as a sociological, psychological, anthropological and cultural phenomenon.
If one wants to understand a society, one needs to look at the religious practices present within that society. EARS looks at the practices of everyday lived religion within the different European societies.