Losing Common Ground: Belief Polarization and Disagreement

FBK-ISR International Seminar 2022

In recent years, the topic of religious disagreement has attracted considerable attention from philosophers working on the epistemology of religious belief. At the same time, social psychologists have studied the phenomenon of belief polarization, producing substantive empirical backing for the claim that exposure to shared evidence bearing upon a disputed question tends to deepen, rather than diminish, previously existing disagreement. The effect seems to be particularly pronounced when what is at issue are controversial questions which touch upon the identities of the parties to a disagreement.

The talk will introduce a range of conceptions of disagreement and belief polarization from social psychology and philosophical epistemology, and critically discuss the question of whether, and to what extent, those conceptions are useful for understanding phenomena of religious disagreement.

Scientific coordination
Massimo Leone, Director FBK-ISR


Cycle of seminars: “De-Polarization in Religion and Ethics


The event will be held in English

The presentation will take place online

To connect to the event, registration is required by Wednesday 4 May 2022 at 12.00 noon

During the meeting, the webcam and microphone will be disabled to avoid network overloads



Fresco by Schweitzer


  • Boris Rähme is a researcher at the Center for Religious Studies of Fondazione Bruno Kessler and lecturer in Philosophy of Logic at the University of Trento. He works in the fields of social epistemology, philosophy of religion and the intersection between religious studies and theories of innovation. He is the author of "Wahrheit, Begründbarkeit und Fallibilität" (Ontos, 2010) and numerous articles and book chapters in philosophical epistemology, theories of truth, religion and new technologies. Recent publications include: “Religious Disagreement and Religious Relevance: A Perspective from Contemporary Philosophical Epistemology”, "ET-Studies 11" (2020); “Artificial Intelligence and Religion: Between Existing AI and Grand Narratives”, "Material Religion 17" (2021); “Religion and Innovation: Charting the Territory”, "Handbook of Alternative Theories of Innovation", ed. by Benoît Godin, Gérald Gaglio and Dominique Vinck (Edward Elgar, 2021).


Registration to this event is mandatory.

Registration closed on 04/05/2022.



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