External Scientific Expert
Marion Bowman, Professor of Vernacular Religion, has been based in Religious Studies at The Open University UK since 2000. With a background in Religious Studies and Folklore/Ethnology, her research has tended to be fieldwork-based, with people within, on the margins of and outside institutional religion, and she has conducted long term research in Glastonbury, a significant pilgrimage destination and microcosm of contemporary spirituality and vernacular religiosity on which she has published extensively. Her research interests include material religion; spiritual economies; non-traditional pilgrimage, and the contemporary growth of ‘Caminoised’ pilgrimage – that is, pilgrimage influenced by the Camino de Santiago.
She was Co-Investigator leading the fieldwork activity on the AHRC funded project Pilgrimage and England’s Cathedrals, Past and Present, 2014-2018, and as visiting .2 Professor at the University of Oslo, 2016-2018, she was involved in researching the phenomenon of ‘new’ and ‘renewed’ pilgrimage in Norway and other parts of northern Europe.
She has co-edited two books with Ülo Valk, Vernacular Knowledge: Contesting Authority, Expressing Beliefs (Equinox, 2022) and Vernacular Religion in Everyday Life: Expressions of Belief (Equinox, 2012); a Special Issue on ‘Reframing Pilgrimage in Northern Europe’ (NUMEN 67:5-6 2020) with Dirk Johannsen and Ane Ohrvik; and a Thematic Issue on ‘Religion in Cathedrals: Pilgrimage, Place, Heritage, and the Politics of Replication’ with Simon Coleman (Religion 49:1 2019).