Professor of Religious Studies
Ph.D., University of Chicago 1990
M.A., University of Arizona 1984
B.A., Concordia College 1980
David Morgan is Professor of Religious Studies with a secondary appointment in the Department of Art, Art History, and Visual Studies at Duke. He also chairs the Department of Religious Studies at Duke. Morgan received his Ph.D. at the University of Chicago in 1990. He has published several books and dozens of essays on the history of religious visual culture, on art history and critical theory, and on religion and media. Images at Work: The Material Culture of Enchantment, will appear in 2018 from Oxford University Press. The Forge of Vision: A Visual History of Modern Christianity, based on the 2012 Cadbury Lectures delivered at the University of Birmingham, UK, appeared in 2015 from the University of California Press. Previous books include The Embodied Eye: Religious Visual Culture and the Social Life of Feeling (California, 2012), The Lure of Images: A History of Religion and Visual Media in America (Routledge, 2007) and two that he edited and contributed to: Religion and Material Culture: The Matter of Belief (Routledge, 2010) and Key Words in Religion, Media, and Culture (Routledge, 2008). Earlier works: Visual Piety (University of California Press, 1998), Protestants and Pictures (Oxford, 1999), and The Sacred Gaze (California, 2005). Morgan is co-founder and co-editor of the international scholarly journal, Material Religion, and co-editor of a book series at Routledge entitled “Religion, Media, and Culture.” Morgan is currently at work on a new book under contract with the University of North Carolina Press, entitled "The Thing about Religion: An Introduction to Studying the Materiality of Belief."
ExpertiseHistory of religious visual culture, art history and critical theory, religion and media
Morgan, D. "The Visual Construction of the Sacred." Images and Communities The Visual Construction of the Social. Ed. M Stocchetti and J Sumiala-Seppänen. Helsinki: Gaudeamus-Helsinki University Press, 2007. 53-74. (Chapter)
"Absent Fathers and Women with Beards: Religion and Gender in Popular Imagery of the Nineteenth Century." American Visual Cultures. Ed. D Holloway and J Beck. London: Continuum International Publishing Group, 2005. 39-47.
Morgan, D. "Manly Pain and Motherly Love: Mel Gibson’s Big Picture." After The Passion is Gone: American Religious Consequences. Ed. JS Landres and M Berenbaum. Lanham, MD: AltaMira Press/Rowman & Littlefield, 2004. 149-157. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "Catholic Visual Piety and The Passion of the Christ." Re-Viewing The Passion: Mel Gibson's Film and Its Critics. Ed. S Brent. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004. 85-96. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "Toward a Modern Historiography of Art and Religion." Reluctant Partners: Art and Religion in Dialogue. Ed. E Heller. New York: The Gallery at the American Bible Society, 2004. 16-47. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "Visual Media and the Case of Ethiopian Protestantism." =Belief in Media: Media and Christianity in a Cultural Perspective. Ed. M Hess, P Horsfield, and A Medrano. Aldershot, Hampshire, UK: Ashgate Publishing, 2004. 91-106. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "Protestant Visual Piety and the Aesthetics of American Mass Culture." Mediating Religion: Conversations in Media, Religion and Culture. Ed. J Mitchell and S Marriage. London: T&T Clark, 2003. 107-120. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "Protestant Visual Practice and American Mass Culture." Practicing Religion in the Age of the Media: Explorations in Media, Religion and Culture. Ed. S Hoover and L Schofield Clark. New York: Columbia University Press, 2002. 37-62. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "The Image of Religion in American LIFE, 1936-1951." Looking at LIFE. Ed. E Doss. Washington DC: Smithsonian Institution Press, 2001. 139-157. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "For Christ and the Republic: Religious Illustration and the History of Literacy in Nineteenth-Century America." The Visual Culture of American Religions. Ed. D Morgan and SM Promey. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001. 49-67. (Chapter)
Morgan, D. "The Authority of the Word: Reflecting on Image and Text in Northern Europe, 1400-1700. Emory University, Lovis Corinth Colloquia III." RENAISSANCE QUARTERLY 65.3 (2012): 896-897. Full Text
Morgan, D. "Mediation or mediatisation: The history of media in the study of religion." Culture and Religion 12 (June 2011): 137-152.
Morgan, D. "Sound and Space in Renaissance Venice: Architecture, Music, Acoustics." CHURCH HISTORY 79.4 (December 2010): 922-924. Full Text Open Access Copy
Morgan, D. "The look of sympathy: religion, visual culture, and the social life of feeling." Material Religion 5.2 (July 2009): 132-154. Full Text
Morgan, D. "God's Strange Work: William Miller and the End of the World." JOURNAL OF THE EARLY REPUBLIC 29.3 (2009): 538-543.
CORRIGAN, J, MORGAN, D, SILK, M, and WILLIAMS, RH. "Forum: Electronic Media and the Study of American Religion." Religion and American Culture 16.1 (January 2006): 1-24. Full Text
Morgan, D. "Response to spackman, "reconsidering 'kitsch'"." Material Religion 1.3 (December 1, 2005): 417-419.
Morgan, D. "Antigone’s Wall: Magadalena Abakanowicz and the Allure of Images." Image 43 (2004): 25-33. (Essay)
Morgan, D. "The vicissitudes of seeing: Iconoclasm and idolatry." Religion 33.2 (April 2003): 170-180. (Review) Full Text
Morgan, D, and Ivey, PE. "Prayers in Stone: Christian Science Architecture in the United States, 1894-1930." The Journal of American History 88.1 (June 2001): 217-217. (Review) Full Text
Morgan, D. "Spirit and Medium: The Video Art of Bill Viola." Image 26 (2000). (Essay)
Morgan, D. "Ambiguous Icons: The Art of Ed Paschke." Image 17 (1997): 31-44. (Essay)
Morgan, D. "Empathy and the Experience of ‘Otherness’ in Pechstein’s Depictions of Women: The Expressionist Search for Immediacy." The Smart Museum of Art Bulletin 4 (1993): 12-22. (Essay)
Morgan, D. "Sallman’s Head of Christ: The History of an Image." The Christian Century 109 (October 7, 1992): 868-870. (Essay)
Morgan, D. "The Allure of Electronic Media and the Study of Religion." Religion and American Culture 16.1: 7-13. (Essay)
Fellowships, Supported Research, & Other Grants
Research & Travel Grant awarded by Stichting Porticus, Amsterdam (2004 to 2005)
NEH Humanities Fellowship awarded by National Endowment for the Humanities (2001 to 2002)
Postdoctoral Fellowship in the History of Art and Humanities awarded by J. Paul Getty (1996 to 1997)
Pew Postdoctoral Fellowship in Religion and American History awarded by Yale University (1994 to 1995)