Centre for Religion and Public Life research clusters

Religion, Ethnicity and Diaspora

Centre for Religion and Public Life research examines the complex intersections of religion, ethnicity and identity in contexts of migration and diaspora.

The research in this area, which is of an ethnographic nature, focuses on both local, national and international levels, and is mostly concerned with South Asian Muslim and Sikh communities and traditions.


Postgraduate research students

  • David Harrison

Key publications

Jasjit Singh, “A Sense of Place: Sikh Identity in Great Britain and Hong Kong”, Asian Anthropology 14/1 (2015), 103-114.
Seán McLoughlin, “Pilgrimage, Performativity, and British Muslims: Scripted and Unscripted Accounts of the Hajj and Umra”, in Hajj: Global Interactions Through Pilgrimage, edited by Luitgard Mols and Marjo Buitleaar (eds.) (Leiden: Sidestone Press), 41-64.

Seán McLoughlin, William Gould, Ananya Jahanara Kabir, Emma Tomalin (eds.), Writing the City in British Asian Diasporas (London: Routledge 2014).

Major projects

Singh carried out a CREST funded research project on Sikh Activism in Britain: Narratives and Issues (2016-17).
McLoughlin was awarded a British Academy funded Mid-Career Fellowship on The Hajj and British Muslims: the Anthropology and Sociology of Islam in the UK (2013-14).

Impact and engagement

Singh wrote a research report The Idea, Context, Framing and Realities of “Sikh Radicalisation” in Britain for CREST (2017).
McLoughlin led an AHRC-funded collaboration with the British Museum on its exhibition “Hajj: Journey to the Heart of Islam” (2012).