Dr. Tara Isabella Burton is a novelist, essayist, and scholar of religion and spirituality. Her debut novel, 2018’s Social Creature, was named a “book of the year” by The New York Times, New York’s Vulture, and The Guardian. Her second novel, The World Cannot Give, will be published by Simon & Schuster in March 2022.
Her first nonfiction book, Strange Rites: New Religions for a Godless World (2020), was praised by Tim Shriver as “the most thoughtful analysis of our current spiritual crisis anywhere.” She is working on a history of self-creation, Self-Made: Curating Our Image from Da Vinci to the Kardashians, to be published by Public Affairs in 2023.
Her fiction and nonfiction have appeared in The New York Times, National Geographic, Granta, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, and more. She is a columnist at Religion News Service and a Contributing Editor at American Purpose. She also co-writes the Substack newsletter “Line of Beauty” with her husband, Dhananjay Jagannathan.
Tara received a doctorate in theology from Trinity College, Oxford, where she was a Clarendon Scholar, in 2017.