Dr David Addison

BA (Hons), MSc, DPhil
Examination Fellow since 2017

My research focuses on the history of lay religion in the Iberian Peninsula from the Late Roman Empire to the end of the Visigothic kingdom in 711. The idea of 'lay religion' - religion as experienced by people who were not clerics – draws us away from institutional histories of religion, and adds an important social dimension to our understanding of a period in which socio-economic and cultural history are too often kept apart. The central questions centre on how laypeople and clerics made their different claims to power in the religious sphere, and how the nature of their conflicts and collaborations changed over time. This entails thinking critically and historically about the very concepts of 'religion', 'superstition', 'secular' and so on - all of which had the capacity to be used fluidly and polemically.