About Anna


Anna Fedele

Anna Fedele’s research focuses on the intersections of gender and religion with a particular emphasis on corporeality, sexuality and ritual creativity.

Anna holds a Ph.D in Social and Cultural Anthropology from the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and the Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona. She is a Senior Researcher (Investigadora Auxiliar) of the Center for Research in Anthropology (CRIA) at the Lisbon University Institute and  a chercheure associée of the Centre d’Études en Sciences Sociales du Religieux (CéSor, Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales and Centre Nationale de la Recherche Scientifique).

Anna’s dissertation has been published as part of the Oxford Series in Ritual Studies under the title: Looking for Mary Magdalene. Alternative Pilgrimage and Ritual Creativity at Catholic Shrines in France (Oxford University Press, 2013). This book has received the Award for Excellence in the Study of Religion of the American Academy of Religion.

Her Master thesis has been published as a Spanish book entiled El camino de María Magdalene (RBA, 2008). This text explores the long exegetical path that the figure of saint Mary Magdalene has performed from the beginnings of Christianity until the publication of The Da Vinci Code (2003). Particular attention is paid to contemporary interpretations of Mary Magdalene and its relationship with the feminist spirituality movement.

Anna has been a chercheure associée of the Groupe de Sociologie Politique et Morale, École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, Paris until the dissolution of this laboratoire in 2013. She has been a Visiting Scholar at the anthropology department of Stanford University in 2010, at the Robert Schuman Center for Advanced Studies of the European University Institute (Florence) in 2013 and at the Institut de Sciences Sociales des Religions Contemporaines of the University of Lausanne in 2014.

She has co-edited with Ruy Llera Blanes Encounters of Body and Soul in Contemporary Religious Practices; Anthropological Reflections (Berghahn Books, EASA series)

Gender and Power in Contemporary Spirituality: Ethnographic Approaches, the volume Anna co-edited with Kim Knibbe has recently been published as part of the Routledge Studies in Religion Series.

Anna has also coordinated two special issues:

– with Élisabeth Claverie: Uncertainty in Vernacular ReligionsSocial Compass

– with Sabina Magliocco: Ritual Creativity, Emotions and the Body, Journal of Ritual Studies

Anna also holds a MA in German and English literature from the Universitá Cattolica of Milan with a thesis entiled “La figura di Medea quale guaritrice e maga nel romanzo Medea-Stimmen di Christa Wolf” (The figure of Medea as a healer and witch in the novel Medea-Voices by Christa Wolf) (1998) The thesis analyses the feminist reinterpretation of the mythological figure of Medea by the German author Christa Wolf, one of the best-known writers to have emerged from the former East Germany, in her novel Medea- Voices (1996). A chapter that resumes Anna’s MA thesis has been published in Spanish as part of the book: RIUS GATELL, Rosa (ed.), Sobre la guerra y la violencia en el discurso femenino (1914-1989), Barcelona: Publicacions i Edicions de la Universitat de Barcelona, 2006.

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