Margarita Mooney

Associate Professor, Princeton Theological Seminary

I am a scholar, educator, mentor and author who is interested in how inter-disciplinary work in social sciences, philosophy and theology can contribute both to a scientific understanding of the world and contribute practical knowledge about the art of everyday living. After studying psychology at Yale University, I worked in Costa Rica for three years at the Arias Foundation for Peace and Human Progress, where I conducted fieldwork on the re-integration into civilian life of ex-combatants in Central America in the mid-1990s. As a graduate student in sociology at Princeton University, I aimed to integrate rigorous sociological methods with normative and practical considerations. My dissertation was published as a book Faith Makes Us Live: Surviving and Thriving in the Haitian Diaspora (University of California Press, 2009). Based on 16 months of fieldwork in Haiti, Canada, France and the US and using census and immigration data, I demonstrated how religious communities support the successful adaptation of Haitian immigrants in the U.S., Canada and France.

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Published Articles and Book Chapters

Margarita Mooney. “Narratives, Religion and Traumatic Life Events Among Young Adults.” Social Thought and Research, Volume 33 (2014), pp. 45-82. DOI:10.17161/STR.1808.18445. Click here to read this paper.

Stephanie Potochnick and Margarita A. Mooney. “The Decade of Immigrant Dispersion and Growth: A Cohort Analysis of Children of Immigrants‘ Educational Experiences 1990-2002”. International Migration Review. Online article published 2014. Print version forthcoming 2015. DOI: 10.1111/imre.12111

Margarita Mooney. “Virtues and Human Personhood in the Social Sciences.” Pp. 21-44 in The Palgrave Handbook of Altruism, Morality and Social Solidarity: Formulating a Field of Study. Vincent Jeffries, editor. New York: Palgrave MacMillan, 2014. Click here to read this paper.

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Book Reviews

Review of: Une Laïcité ‘Légitme’: La France et ses religions d’État. [“‘Legimiate’Laicité: France and its state religions.”]  By Raphaël Liogier. Paris: Entre Nous, 2006. In Contemporary Sociology 39 (3): pp.319-210. 2010. Click here to see this review.

Review of: Across Generations: Immigrant Families in America. By Nancy Foner (ed.) New York: New York University Press, 2009. In Contemporary Sociology 39 (1): pp. 33-35. 2010 Click here to see this review.

Review of: Sacred Assemblies and Civic Engagement: How Religion Matters for America’s Newest Immigrants. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2007. By Fred Kniss and Paul D. Numrich. Reviewed for Social Forces. Forthcoming, 2010

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Teaching

Princeton Theological Seminary (2016-Present)

  • Religion, Resilience and Vulnerability. (Fall 2016)
  • Monastic Traditions and Christian Spiritualties (Mentorship Group, Fall 2016 and Spring 2017).
  • Christianity in Cuba (Travel Course, January 2017).
  • Philosophy of Social Science (Spring 2017).
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Moving Forward the Debate on Science and Religion

My entry for November 2, 2011, published by Patheos on the Black White and Gray blog. “As a graduate student, I remember reading Pope John Paul II’s encyclical on Faith and Reason and reflecting on his claim that science, for all of its great advances, is...
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Carolina Population Center features my research on Haiti

The Carolina Population Center has featured my research on Haiti on their website. You can see the website by clicking here. The website also contains testimonials I received about relief work in Haiti. Father Mario Serrano wrote about setting up an aid distribution...
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Interview Published by the NY-based National Center for Haitian Apostolate

On June 23, 2010, the National Center for Haitian Apostolate, based in New York, published an extensive interview with me where I talk about my book and its implications for post-earthquake Haiti and Haitian-Americans. Click here to read the...
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My Conversation with Islamic Reform Scholar Mohsen Kadivar

Published on February 1, 2012, on the Black, White and Gray blog, my post on Islamic reform scholar Mohsen Kadivar. Click here to read the full post. “Although he is known by many as a political dissident, Islamic scholar Mohsen Kadivar emphasized to me over...
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Incorporating Critical Realism into Research Methods Classes

This is the third of three blogs in which I list 23 readings we could use to teach about the methodological implications of CR. Don’t forget to register for my webinar in CR & Research Methods on April 28, 2016, at 12 noon EDT (you can see the recording even...
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Talking with the Research on Religion podcast

Under “Press,” there’s a new podcast-interview between me and Anthony Gill (who runs the Research on Religion Podcast). From the description: “Although the 2010 earthquake in Haiti generated a great deal of media attention to the plight of...
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Critical Realism and Sociological Research Methods Webinar April 28th

On April 28, 2016, at 12 Noon EDT, I’ll be giving a free webinar on Critical Realism and Sociological Research Methods. Every good researcher is to some extent a good theoretician. Yet, typical approaches to teaching and writing about sociological research...
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Testimony from Cuba: The Pope’s Visit was an Oasis

On April 4, 2012, I published this post on the Black, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos, the second post in a series about Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Cuba in March 2012. “In her email to me this week, Laura said  how elated she was that since Cuba decided to...
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Why Positive Sociology Needs Tragic Sociology

How might positive psychology and positive sociology benefit from greater engagement with theological views of suffering? At a the 2015 meetings of the American Sociological Association (ASA), I explained why I think positive psychology, and the nascent field of...
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My Re-Encounter with Martin Seligman: Launching a Psychology-Sociology Dialogue on Human Flourishing

On October 16, 2012, I published this post on the Black, White & Gray blog hosted by Patheos. “When, as a 7th grader, I wrote a speech based on Martin Seligman’s theory of learned helplessness, little did I imagine that several decades later I would be...
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Margarita Mooney

Associate Professor, Princeton Theological Seminary