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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Women Can’t Have it All, and It’s Better That Way

On July 4, 2012, I published this post on the Black, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos. It is the second post in a series on Women at Work, in response to Anne Marie Slaughter’s piece. “When I was in graduate school, I played in Princeton University’s summer...
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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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Leisure and Worship: A Christmas Message

Published on December 21, 2011, on the Black White and Gray blog. Click here to see the full post. “Until recently, I thought leisure was what I do when I’m too tired to work. After much prodding, I finally read Josef Pieper’s Leisure the Basis of...
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Goodbye, Robert Bellah

I originally published this post on July 31, 2013, on the Black, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos. Click here to read that post. Robert Bellah once wrote: “Because good social science is always morally serious, we can transpose Weber’s saying that...
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Miami Herald Easter Sunday Article on Faith and Social Action at Notre Dame d’Haiti in Miami

Click here to read an article published on Easter Sunday in the Miami Herald about the faith and social activities at Notre Dame d’Haiti in Miami (one of the sites of my fieldwork) in response to the...
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Pope Benedict in Cuba: There is No Fatherland Without Virtue

I initially published this post on the Black, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos. Perhaps by now you have seen one of these images of two ideological opposites, Pope Benedict XVI and Cuba’s Fidel Castro, who met for 30 minutes at the end of the Pope’s...
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Book Launch/Birthday Party

To see pictures from my book launch/birthday party on August 25, 2009, please see my book’s website. About 50 people came, including friends, colleagues from Department of Sociology and the Carolina Population Center, and some of my undergraduate students. I...
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Communism and Christianity through the Eyes of a Cuban Catholic

On April 23, 2012, I published this post on theBlack, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos, the second post in a series about Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Cuba in March 2012. Click here for my podcast interview on Pope Benedict XVI’s visit to Cuba, hosted by...
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Identical Triplets!

Parfait Gasana, the co-recipient of the 2009 Odum Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Sociology at UNC, with his identical triplet brothers. They were the first known identical triplets born in Rwanda–and apparently doctors came from all over to have a...
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How Effective is Online Learning? Insights from Sociology of Religion Online

On June 6, 2012, I published this post on theBlack, White and Gray blog hosted by Patheos, the fourth post in a series about Teaching Sociology of Religion Online. “Earlier in this series of posts about my experience teaching sociology of religion, I wrote about...
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Margarita Mooney

Associate Professor, Princeton Theological Seminary