Marian Burchardt

Marian Burchardt is postdoctoral research fellow in the research group “legal regulations of religious pluralism”, headed by Matthias Koenig, and associate lecturer at the University of Göttingen. Before coming to the Max Planck Institute, he worked as a researcher in the project “Multiple Secularities”, based at the Cultural Studies Department of the University of Leipzig, and as a lecturer at the Department of Development Sociology at the University of Bayreuth. Marian was also a visiting scholar at the New School for Social Research in New York City, the Social Science Research Centre Berlin (WZB), and the University of Stellenbosch.

His doctoral dissertation, submitted to the University of Leipzig in 2009, explores the entanglements of religion, sexuality and biomedicine in South Africa’s HIV/AIDS epidemic from a transnational perspective. In this context he has examined how medical uncertainties resonate with patients' biographical uncertainties, how social constructions of illness, treatment and therapy are defined and authorized in practices of health counseling, and how religion is deployed within the pedagogical apparatuses of disease prevention with a view toward 'saving lives' and increasing patient compliance. Together with colleagues, he is currently preparing an edited volume on religion and biomedical treatments for HIV/AIDS and a special issue on counseling regimes both focused on Africa.