Religion and Personality

  • Graham Richards
Part of the Library of the History of Psychological Theories book series (LHPT)


One of the few relatively flourishing religious topics of empirical Psychological research for many decades has been the relationships between religious belief and personality. This has the advantage, from an orthodox scientific point of view, of sidestepping the issue of the validity or otherwise of religious beliefs themselves, and if seeming to have the underlying ‘reductionist’ thrust of treating belief as no more than a contingent personality trait, it can also be read by believers as aiding their proselytizing goals—a kind of ‘market research’ exercise. Methodologically this research has generally been quite conventional, involving psychometric analysis of questionnaire responses in order to identify the various ‘factors’ characterising religious belief, and often, moving on from this, to identify ‘types’ of believer.


Religious Belief Religious Orientation General Personality Religious Topic Religious Conservative 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Graham Richards BooksTunbridge WellsUnited Kingdom

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