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Martínez-Ariño, Julia 1

Martínez-Ariño, Julia

Individual Fellow

Narratives of Apostasy: When Leaving the Church is not Just a Matter of Faith

Research Question

How do apostates in contemporary Spain and Argentina narrate their experiences of formally leaving the Catholic Church? Which cultural and political meanings do they attach to the apostasy process?

Project Description

My book project “Narratives of Apostasy” analyses the narratives of people who have left the Catholic Church formally, be it individually or in protest movements of collective apostasies. Drawing on qualitative research conducted with apostates in two Catholic-majority countries, Argentina and Spain, I conceptualise apostasy as a form of political action. This lens expands our understanding of religious disaffiliation beyond a focus on the rejection of faith. The project will contribute to academic and social debates on the decline of historical Christian churches, the increasing relevance of forms of non-religion and their meaning in different socio-cultural and political contexts.

Selected Publications

MARTÍNEZ-ARIÑO, J. (Ed.) (2021). Urban Secularism: Negotiating Religious Diversity in Europe. Abingdon and New York: Routledge.

MARTÍNEZ-ARIÑO, J. (2020). “Jewish Spatial Practices in Barcelona as Claims for Recognition”, Social Inclusion, 8(3): 240-250.

MARTÍNEZ-ARIÑO, J. (2019). “Governing Islam in French Cities: Defining ‘Acceptable’ Public Religiosity through Municipal Consultative Bodies”, Religion, State & Society, 47(4-5): 423-439.


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