Politics and Religion
RG Journal Impact: 0.84 *
*This value is calculated using ResearchGate data and is based on average citation counts from work published in this journal. The data used in the calculation may not be exhaustive.
RG Journal impact history
|2018 RG Journal impact||Available summer 2019|
|2015 RG Journal impact||0.84|
|2014 RG Journal impact||0.53|
|2013 RG Journal impact||0.56|
|2012 RG Journal impact||0.38|
|2011 RG Journal impact||0.17|
|2010 RG Journal impact||0.12|
|2009 RG Journal impact||0.19|
RG Journal impact over time
RG Journal impact
|Cited half-life||data not available|
|Immediacy index||data not available|
|Eigenfactor||data not available|
|Article influence||data not available|
|Material type||Series, Periodical|
|Document type||Journal / Magazine / Newspaper|
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Publications in this journal
- Mapping the Legal Boundaries of Belonging: Religion and Multiculturalism from Israel to Canada. Edited by René Provost . New York, NY: Oxford University Press. 340 pp. $99.00 Cloth, $35.00 Paper - Volume 9 Issue 3 - Sonia Sikka
- The Evangelical Origins of the Living Constitution. John W. Compton Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2014. 272 pp. $45.00 Cloth - Volume 9 Issue 2 - Benjamin T. Lynerd
- This article studies the influence of religion on political attitudes in Israel by testing two propositions: religion-friendly democratization and greedy socialization. The former implies that accommodation of religious demands stimulates democratization, the latter argues that domineering religious socialization does not motivate democratic attitudes. Analysis of data from representative surveys conducted in 2006-2013, supports greedy socialization over the religion friendly hypothesis. I show that in most instances, socialization in religion-friendly environments does not moderate the political attitudes of religiously conservative groups. The results suggest that unbounded accommodation of religious needs in non-religious institutions may strengthen undemocratic political attitudes. Copyright © Religion and Politics Section of the American Political Science Association 2015.
- Allusions to holy scriptures and quotes from sacred texts appear in hundreds of political science articles. Yet while we treat other ancient texts with reverence and diligence, we have not extended a similar care to the holy scriptures of the world's religions. Political scientists often refer to biblical events, statements, and turns of phrase but rarely cite them, chapter and verse. They are careless about referencing the precise translation of the holy texts used, tend to cite religious passages out of context, and disregard the role of religious tradition, interpretation, and practice in shaping and reshaping the meaning of holy texts. I offer examples for these trends, provide evidence for their harmful implications and offer guidelines for the appropriate treatment of sacred texts as formal scholarly sources. Copyright © Religion and Politics Section of the American Political Science Association 2013.
- The 19th century was a time of rapid population growth in the United States, and much of it was due to immigration from Europe. In the 1840s and 1850s, the largest proportion of immigrants came from Ireland and Germany, and most were Catholic. The Germans spread across small communities as far west as Wisconsin and Texas, but the Irish concentrated in the larger cities on the eastern seaboard, especially Boston, New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. Local third- and fourth-generation Protestant immigrants from England resented the new arrivals and organized “Nativist” associations. Among these was the anti-Catholic American Party, better known as the Know Nothing Party, which enjoyed spectacular success in Massachusetts and other states during 1854–1855. But, by 1862, the party was dead. This article examines how moral panic theory, the theory of persistent cultural patterns and cycles, and revitalization theory may offer insights into the Know Nothing Party. Each of these theories explains both the emergence of the party and its rapid demise, and suggest that each can make a contribution to understanding anti-Catholicism in nineteenth-century America, and the Know Nothing Party in particular.
- The literature on state accommodation of Muslim religious practices has focused on the regional context of Western Europe and North America. In this project, I identify and compare state policies toward Islamic religious practices using a sample of 22 former communist Muslim republics of Eurasia. For this purpose, I construct an original dataset collected from a variety of sources. Employing the number of mosques functioning in each post-communist Muslim republic as the measure of state accommodation of religious practices I find that among all factors the level of democracy is the single most important variable in explaining variation in accommodation of Islamic religious practices. To further demonstrate significance of these results I trace the process of democratic influence on state accommodation of religious policies examining in-depth the case of Tatars both in the pre-communist Imperial and revolutionary Russia and the contemporary republic of Tatarstan.
- While public opinion research has expanded rapidly in the Islamic world since 2001, little scholarly work has examined interviewer effects related to an enumerator's religious adherence. We find that the perceived religiosity of an interviewer impacts respondents' expressions of personal piety and adherence to Islamic cultural norms in a sample of approximately 1,200 women in Greater Cairo. Muslim women indicate that they are more religious and adherent to Islamic cultural norms when interviewed by an enumerator donning the Islamic headscarf. Conversely, members of Egypt's minority Coptic Christian community report that they are less adherent to Christianity when interviewed by a veiled enumerator. Through psychological processes of strategic self-presentation of identity and impression management, the veil may trigger Muslim respondents to express what they perceive to be socially desirable (i.e., more devout) responses; in contemporary Egypt, being perceived as pious may elicit social and economic benefits. Christians appear to deemphasize their religious identity to avoid appearing at odds with the dominant, Muslim majority to which the enumerator appears to belong. Younger, poorer and less educated women — who may be most susceptible to concerns about social desirability — show the largest effects.
- Examination of the First Amendment's establishment clause in the post World War II period is unique in American constitutional interpretation because virtually all voices had agreed on one point, originalism. Few if any significant writers on the establishment clause had doubted the centrality of the founders' original intent for interpreting the clause's meaning. Yet this now has changed. Unlike their predecessors, leading advocates of church-state separation have now moved away from an original meaning interpretation of the establishment clause. Yet these separationists continue to try to ground their normative policy prescriptions in establishment clause mandates. They attempt this balancing act by employing narrative strategies of evolutionary processes in history. They do not simply track changes in constitutional doctrine, but characterize changes yielding greater separation between church and state through the nation's history as incipient in the Republic's founding, an originally inchoate church-state principle only fully formed through historical evolution. In the process, they sweep myriad separationist ideas into their progressively evolving narratives which have never been enunciated as law. Their accounts thus often reflect less an attempt to track historical developments in fundamental law than an attempt to construct fundamental law narratives. These attempts highlight persistent historical problems in the separationist endeavor that require attention if the evolutionary narratives of leading separationist are to shape the field of establishment clause history.
- The public opinion literature shows that cues about the policy positions of social groups influence citizens’ political attitudes. We assess whether cues about religious groups’ positions affect attitudes on three issues: protection of homosexuals in the workplace, improving the socio-economic conditions of African-Americans, and government-provided health insurance. We argue that such cues should shape issue attitudes and condition the impact of religious and political orientations on those attitudes. That should be especially true on issues closely connected to religion and for citizens with low levels of political awareness. We assess this argument with a survey experiment pitting pairs of religious groups on opposite sides of issues. We find that religious group cues matter primarily for cultural attitudes, among less politically-aware individuals, and for the religiously unaffiliated, Democrats, and liberals. The dominant effect is negative, moving these groups away from the positions of religious leaders and especially evangelical leaders.
- We explore the relationship between religiosity and public support for greater government services. We theorize that increases in religiosity and public opinion both reflect demands from citizens in the face of insecurity. We argue that religiosity is comprised of two factors: responses to insecurity; and long-held preferences for religion, or secularity. We show that previous studies that have observed increased religiosity leading to decreased support for government spending have not distinguished among religiosity as driven by secularity versus insecurity. To test our theory, we first estimate a series of simulations, and we then turn to the dynamics of aggregate religiosity and public opinion in the United States over the past fifty years, an environment where long-held preferences for religious goods have remained relatively stable. Consistent with our theory, religiosity and public opinion respond to insecurity; the series are positively correlated, move together through time, and react in similar ways to changes in GDP per capita. Our findings indicate that during times when there is greater insecurity, both religiosity and demand from government increase.
- Examining religion in the study of political behavior has produced varied results because of a lack of clarity on the conceptualization of religion and a methodology that cannot adequately untangle the multiple meanings of religion. Using the technique of propensity score matching, this work breaks apart the three B's in a number of analyses in order to properly understand how behavior, belief, and belonging impacts political tolerance. The results of this analysis indicate that a belief in biblical literalism decreases political tolerance, while church attendance often increases tolerance.
- This is a study of the comparative outcome success experienced by 2748 participants in government-funded faith-based and community-based intervention programs for at-risk and adjudicated Latino youths run by 28 providers in five western cities. The Latino Coalition, an intermediary faith-based organization, subcontracted with 28 sub-grantees that provided the services from 2005–2008. The study found similar outcomes were experienced by youths in the faith-based versus the community-based programs, but it did find significantly different outcomes by the comprehensive versus non-comprehensive nature of the programs. The study places its findings in the context of faith-based and community initiatives and draws conclusions concerning the public policy implications of the government partnering with faith-based and community-based organizations to provide public services to needy, and especially minority, populations.
- Recent research in the United States has found candidates for elected office are able to use a rhetorical form of closed-circuit communication with evangelical Protestants — “God Talk” — that communicates valuable political information without alerting other constituencies. Close observation of the 2010 parliamentary elections in the United Kingdom (U.K.) uncovered what appeared to be a form of God Talk in use by David Cameron and the Conservative Party, especially the use of “broken” to describe the state of Britain. Thus, we assess whether God Talk is an efficacious communication strategy in the U.K. using an experiment that selectively exposes participants to God Talk statements. The mixed results suggest that some forms of God Talk are better than others in conveying to U.K. evangelicals that a candidate is conservative and religious without triggering the same associations by non-evangelical voters. We close with a discussion of the normative impact of such communication strategies.
- This article discusses Abdullahi Ahmed an-Na‘im's Islam and the Secular State from the perspective of Marsilius of Padua's political theory. Both authors share similar concepts of the relationship between religion, state policy, and the state, and allow for the integration of religious doctrines into state law. Nonetheless, the Marsilian conception provides stronger protection of unbelievers' and religious dissenters' civic rights. In the broader discourse on political theory of rights, Marsilius argues in favors of individual rights and a protection of minority rights, while an-Na‘im's theory of Shari‘a reform suggests a preference for a people's self-determination.
- Public opinion research has demonstrated that minority religious and ethnic groups hold distinctive preferences on foreign policy issues, including military interventions in the Cold War and post-Cold War eras. There has been little scholarly research in Britain into the attitudes of minority groups on foreign policy issues. This article uses a nationally-representative survey of the ethnic minority population in Britain to examine the sources of public opinion towards the war in Afghanistan. Using multivariate analysis, it finds strong effects for religious affiliation, religiosity and political alienation. There is also evidence of a “gender gap” and age-related differences. The paper contributes to the literature on the impact of religion on public opinion and foreign policy and to analysis of the political attitudes of minority groups in Britain.
- Does Christianity re-emerge in politics even in the most secularized part of the world, Western Europe? In this article, the exemplary case of the Netherlands provides empirical evidence for two mechanisms of resurgent Christianity in party politics. In this way, the article also offers a more precise understanding under what conditions various dimensions of religion become (again) or remain politically significant. The first mechanism has been the incentive of secularization and secularism for remaining Christians to regroup in a so-called creative minority to convey an explicitly faith-based message to a broader public. Modernization has therefore not automatically meant less religion in politics. However, creative minorities remained a relatively minor affair in Dutch party politics, despite the large number of Christian migrants and their descendants. Second, Christian and culturally rightwing, secular parties have increasingly referred to a Judeo-Christian culture to mark the political identities of the European Union and its nations in response to Islam's growing visibility. The concept of Judeo-Christian culture foremost functioned as a sacred word to denote the liberal and secular order of the West, reflecting the re-emergence of Christianity as cultural phenomenon rather than faith in West European politics.
- The absence from Britain of anything like the United States New Christian Right of the 1980s could be explained by differences in the popularity of religion or in features of the respective party and political structures. Devolution and electoral reform have encouraged British Christians to form political parties and contest elections. Examination of their performance, agendas, and candidate profiles, coupled with survey data on British attitudes to mixing religion and politics, suggests that the major difference between the United States and Britain lies in the degree of secularization rather than in political opportunity structures.
- The ideal of public reason, made prominent by John Rawls, has become a mainstay of discussions about the proper role of religious arguments in a politically liberal society. In particular, Rawls's theory of public reason requires citizens and public officials to refrain from appealing to comprehensive religious and philosophical doctrines in public deliberation on matters of basic justice and constitutional essentials. In this essay, we review the ways in which the public life of Martin Luther King, Jr. — with its frequent appeals to a comprehensive doctrine to justify disobedience to the law — represents a challenge to the ideal of public reason, and we consider several Rawlsian rejoinders. What is missing from the existing body of scholarship on public reason is a thorough analysis of King's philosophical and theological arguments, including the examples of legal injustice he offered in his celebrated “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” As we note, King's specific examples of unjust laws rely on a theological framework that bedevils the attempt to reconcile his Letter with the constructivist underpinnings of Rawls's theory of public reason. Indeed, Rawls is in something of a bind: either King's argument is not acceptable under the terms of public reason or public reason simply cannot limit contemporary public discourse in the way Rawls has in mind. We consider several possible Rawlsian arguments for the accommodation of King's theological rhetoric, but conclude that the Rawlsian idea of public reason remains deeply problematic.
- A growing body of literature criticizes the notion that Islamism is sui generis and argues that it could be explained by existing conceptions about human behavior. This approach relies on rational choice theory and its derivatives, characterizing Islamists as rational political actors that engage in cost-benefit analysis and strategic calculation. This article evaluates the explanatory power of this characterization through three case studies, namely the Turkish Justice and Development Party (Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi), the Jordanian Islamic Action Front (Jabhat al-Amal al-Islami), and the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwan al-Muslimun). It argues that although the approach offers explanations for Islamist pragmatism, this characterization has three major limitations: lack of room for ideological change, extreme voluntarism between violence and non-violence, and lack of insight for intra-group gender relations.
- This article examines the relationship between religiosity and support for democracy in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Using data from the last World Values Survey, we examine levels of religiosity among Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats, and their support for democracy. The influence of religiosity on support for democracy is also explored. The results indicate that religiosity has a negative influence on support for democracy, and it is particularly true for individuals who do not support the separation of the religious from the political sphere and who exhibit lower support for democracy. The article also examines different levels of religiosity among the three groups, controlling for a wide range of variables. We conclude that there is basically no difference in support for democracy between Croats and Bosniaks, while Serbs exhibit somewhat lesser support for democracy than members of the other two ethnic groups. Serbs also seem to be somewhat less religious than Bosniaks and Croats. Opposition to separation of the religious from the political sphere is a major source of lack of support for democracy among Croats and Bosniaks, but not among Serbs.
- Even though not all European churches can be ascribed a political profile, moral issues have unleashed the protest of some of them alongside Christian-inspired groups and advocacy coalitions. Mobilization against these issues is not surprising in democracy but the different role that churches might play is. Unlike other European churches, the Spanish Catholic Church has acted as a political contender under Zapatero's rule (2004–2011). The new Socialist agenda, with its emphasis on morally-liberal reforms, has triggered a protest in which the church has invested significant resources and helped mobilize the more Conservative quarters of the Catholic society. This adversarial role is distinctive but not unique: the Italian and Polish churches have also opted for confrontational strategies in the face of similar challenges. However, the Spanish case is most relevant because, unlike other predominantly Catholic societies (Italy, Portugal, Ireland, and Poland), it has experienced a most profound and fastest secularization process. Confrontation can then be explained by the supply (a well-endowed Church that enjoys a privileged relationship with a non-confessional state) and not by the demand.
- This article argues that high levels of government regulation of religion help to explain the “democracy gap” in majority Muslim countries. Controlling for previously hypothesized determinants of democracy, it finds that as levels of regulation increase, levels of democracy decline. Examination of specific types of religious regulation in Muslim-majority countries uncovers a pattern of repression of religious expression that may be used to mobilize citizens politically. These regulations are targeted more often at Muslims who seek independence from state-controlled religion or who wish to challenge authoritarian governments, rather than at non-Muslim minorities or at religious worship more generally. Thus, authoritarian and semi-authoritarian regimes in Muslim-majority states successfully use policies toward religion to restrict political competition and inhibit democratic transition.
- Mutual autonomy between religious and state institutions is often seen as a key ingredient for democratization. Yet, there are a large number of democracies with an established religion. If a separation of church and state is desirable for the maintenance of a stable democracy, then why do so many democracies continue to support religious institutions and practices? As the evidence from this study reveals, the difference between democracies and non-democracies does not depend on a wall of separation between church and state, but instead, on the protection of religious freedom for minority groups and the promotion of secular legislation.
- The Dover decision restricted the mention of Intelligent Design in a public school science classroom yet the Dover opinion offers an inadequate defensive position. Liberal democracy can exclude Intelligent Design based on the Establishment Clause yet courts do not affirm the teaching of best available science or connect teaching science to other constitutional rights, duties, or institutions. Although Dover has triggered a debate over the role of religion in public and private life, the case reveals complex issues regarding science, citizenship, and the values of liberal democratic civic identity. In three sections, this article (1) reviews the creationism jurisprudence; (2) dissects the Dover decision; and (3) suggests an alternative juridical approach grounded in an education case, Plyler v. Doe, in which education creates citizens who are politically competent, economically fit, and capable of self-development. The conclusion reframes the debate over Intelligent Design as one of civic identity and political reproduction arguing that liberals, using the ideas of Brennan, Marshall, and Breyer must make a positive case for the role of science in shaping the liberal citizen, worker, and person.
- Political mobilization by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints against ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA) was more widespread and important than most studies of the episode have acknowledged. Several decades later, the Church is again organized and active in opposing legal recognition of same-sex marriage. In this article, we explore why and how the Latter-Day Saints mobilized on these two issues. We argue that their mobilization can be understood through classic social movement theory, even though the Church is not an economic-based interest group. Furthermore, the Mormons' approach in fighting the ERA — drawing on centralized authority, tapping into established volunteer and communications networks, effectively channeling money and personnel to where they are most needed, and engaging in stealth politics (obscuring the centralized nature of apparently spontaneous action) — is echoed in the fight against same-sex marriage, even though the times and technology have somewhat changed the mobilization dynamic.
- While scholars have recognized a resurgence of religion, their focus mainly has been on religion's more violent aspects, overlooking its peaceful capacities and effects. This oversight is due in part to the lack of theoretical rigor when it comes to the study of politics and religion. Using the Catholic Church's opposition to the United States’ 2003 war in Iraq, this article highlights the political significance of religion's moral, symbolic voice, which is as important as the hard power that has traditionally dominated international relations. The post-Vatican II Catholic Church's modern articulation of human dignity and interpretation of just war theory challenges both scholars and policymakers to utilize the peaceful, diplomatic methods that international relations theory and practitioners have made available. Religion's role in politics, therefore, can be one that is supportive of modern political societies and it need not be violent.
- The workplace has been hailed as a fruitful context for encountering difference, but other institutions of adult life — notably the church — have been downplayed, as it has been argued that self-selection produces political homogeneity within these environments. At the same time, much of what scholars know about social influence has been based on relatively blunt measures of disagreement, typically included in surveys conducted over multiple-week spans either before or after the actual voting has taken place. Inspired by work on the survival, loci, and democratic consequences of political disagreement, we survey voters at the moment when the literature would suggest they should be most likely to report agreement: Election Day. Wedding exit poll methodology with items that capture the major dimensions of networks and the content of discussion, we re-examine the contexts in which discussions take place and untangle issue-specific patterns of disagreement. We find evidence that church-based networks fulfill important democratic roles relative to other contexts, exposing individuals to cross-cutting discourse while serving as unique sources of information in the midst of broader electoral environments.
- School prayer represents a curiosity of Reagan era politics. Reagan and the social conservative movement secured numerous successes in accommodating religious practice and faith in the public sphere. Yet, when it came to restoring voluntary school prayer, conservatives never succeeded in securing the judicial victory that they sought despite conditions that seemingly favored change. Herein, we attempt to reconcile Reagan era successes with Reagan era failures by exploring Reagan's entrepreneurial activity to affect both the demand (i.e., judges) and supply (i.e., litigants) side of legal change. Identifying Reagan's entrepreneurial activities in his attempt to alter national social policy reveals the resilience of legal institutions to presidential and partisan regimes. Reagan's efforts to change national school prayer policy gained some measure of legislative success by securing the Equal Access Act but it failed to garner a change in school prayer jurisprudence. We conclude by noting that the difficulty of influencing both the demand and supply side of legal change in a timely manner and its implication for reconstructing policy through the courts.
- In spite of legal limitations, commerce in Israel on the Sabbath has expanded significantly in the past two decades. This secular development is counteracted by religious boycotts of stores operating on the Sabbath. Using Ulrich Beck's concept of sub-politics, we explain the shift away from the formal political realm, a result of a deadlocked political system that is no longer able to regulate boundaries between the religious and secular realm. As a result, both religious and secular communities use their power as consumers, albeit in different ways, to shape the public sphere. Using media reports and open-ended interviews with religious and secular entrepreneurs we demonstrate how, first, the value of formal political channels was eroded and, second, how the economic power of religious and secular consumers is used in the new struggles to shape the day of rest.
- This article proposes a revised conceptual definition of consensus social movement. By using the example of the Catholic Worker, I construct a workable concept of a consensus social movement based on Quaker consensus and indigenous decision-making. The new definition of consensus social movement brings theoretical strength as demonstrated in the illustration of the Catholic Worker. The concept of a consensus social movement offers a revised theoretical tool for the social movement literature toolkit.
- The post-Stalinist decade resulted in a temporary liberalization in Soviet religious policy in 1956–1957, followed by an intensification of administrative suppression of religious life during the years 1958–1964. A close evaluation of archival sources reveals the quiet two-faced tendencies of Soviet religious policies vis-a-vis the Orthodox Church of occupied Estonia: on one hand, the dozens of orthodox congregations at the local level were forcibly liquidated and the number of clerics decreased rapidly; on the other hand, the patriotic and ecumenical activities of the administration of the Estonian Eparchy increased dramatically and achieved its “golden era” during the tenure of its new bishop of Tallinn, Aleksii Ridiger (the future patriarch Aleksii II of Moscow). This study describes in detail the gradual increase in the interference of Soviet propaganda with the ecumenical and patriotic activity of the Estonian Eparchy from 1959. In the course of subsequent restrictions and the persecution of religion under Khrushchev, the Estonian Diocese of the Moscow Patriarchate was integrated into the larger scheme of Soviet peace propaganda and ecumenical cooperation. This took the form mainly of the joint reception of foreign church delegations which coincided with the tenure of Bishop Aleksii, who played a big role in the Moscow hierarchy as well as in the external affairs of the Russian Orthodox Church. Visits of Church delegations in Tallinn and Kuremäe monastery became a kind of “show piece” of religious freedom and played their part in Soviet peace propaganda. In conclusion, the rise and ebb of the patriotic and ecumenical activity of the Orthodox diocese in occupied Estonia were influenced by the changes, which took place among the USSR's highest authorities in the religious policies level and by the transition from Stalinist totalitarian dictatorship toward Nikita Khrushchev's more oligarchical system.
- Social group conflict along regional, ethnic, linguistic, and religious cleavages is deeply embedded in the Canadian historical experience. Contemporary analyses, however, have deprecated the role of religion and religiosity in shaping Canadians' political attitudes. This analysis demonstrates that religion and religiosity are significant correlates of Canadian attitudes on moral issues, paralleling the pattern observed in the United States. It demonstrates that the religious cleavage has been a salient feature of Canadian politics for some time and considers whether the contemporary moral divide could serve as a portent of cultural-religious conflict in Canada if a “political entrepreneur” articulated an issue agenda linked to these religion-based differences.
- Most of the research on the effects of direct democracy on minority rights is empirically limited to the direct effects of direct democracy. This article takes the issue a step further and examines both direct and indirect effects by investigating the rights of religious minorities in Switzerland. The analysis provides two main insights: all direct effects are negative and can be observed when the rights of out-groups like Islamic minorities are at stake. Second, indirect effects on the parliamentary process can be observed, too: parliaments make laws more restrictive toward Islamic minorities if they fear a popular vote. However, they develop strategies to enforce their liberal interests, as shown by the fact that extensions of the rights of religious minorities are passed in total revisions.
- The American Catholic Revolution: How the Sixties Changed the Church Forever. By MassaMark S.S.J.New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 2010. xvi + 191 pp. $27.95 Cloth - Volume 4 Issue 3 - Steven P. Millies
- The American founders frequently alluded to and quoted from the Bible in their political rhetoric. This fact alone reveals little about how and for what purposes the founding generation used the Bible and, more important, how the Bible influenced the political thought of the founding era. Drawing on some of the most familiar political rhetoric of the founding era, this article examines the founders' diverse uses of the Bible in political discourse, ranging from the strictly literary and cultural to the theological, from the stylistic to the substantive. Recognition of these distinct uses is important insofar as it is misleading to read spiritual meaning into purely political or rhetorical uses of the Bible or vice versa.
- Prison Religion: Faith-Based Reform and the Constitution. By SullivanWinnifred Fallers. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2009. 304 pp. $37.50 Cloth. $24.95 Paper - Volume 4 Issue 3 - Barbara A. McGraw
- This article analyzes the emergence of female Islamist leaders in the Middle East and North Africa, and the glaring contradictions between their feminist views and their roles as political activists for the Islamic State. The two Islamist leaders who form the primary focus of this analysis are Zaynab al-Ghazali (d. 2005) of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and Nadia Yassine of Morocco's Justice and Charity Society. Our analysis reveals the existence of “Islamist feminism,” distinguished from broader secular-oriented Islamic feminism, as a logical, albeit unique, extension, and expression of Muslim anti-colonial discourse rooted in the intellectual currents of twentieth century independence movements that still resonate today.
- Searching For God in the Sixties. By WilliamsDavid R.. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 2010. 285 pp. $29.50 Cloth - Volume 4 Issue 3 - Charles H. Lippy
- Over the last decade the 80-million strong Anglican Communion has been increasingly divided, seemingly over the issue of sexuality. This article explores this conflict by focusing on the particular problems of resolving conflict when the divisions are a product of a growing ethical pluralism within the Church and the wider society. In particular, we locate the discussion within an emerging debate about the utility of “rules” in resolving conflict in an international community where cultural particularity challenges claims made for universal values. In the Anglican case, hope has been vested in a Covenant that is discussed in the second part of this article. The hope of Church leaders was that this particular set of rules would acquire not just formal consent but normative legitimacy, although by early 2010 it was far from clear that this had resolved the crisis.
- John Rawls contended that an overlapping consensus for “political liberalism” could be found in different ways across the range of comprehensive systems of value in western societies. Three recent conflicts concerning the relationship of church and state in Canada involving the Catholic Bishop of Calgary, Frederick Henry, provide an opportunity to consider Rawls' ideas in a specific societal context. The first of these conflicts — Henry's call for the excommunication of Catholic Prime Minister Paul Martin for legalizing same-sex marriage — suggests that the resources for a Rawlsian overlapping consensus may be difficult to find in Catholicism. The refusal of the Calgary Catholic School Board to obey Henry's order to end the use of gambling related school fund-raising, the second of the Bishop's “travails,” undercuts that conclusion, but the moral emptiness of the vocabulary of cultural liberalism, which the Board deployed in its self-justifications, suggests that too much liberalism might be almost as regrettable as too little. Henry's third travail — a call before the Human Rights Commission to answer charges of “discriminatory public speech” for his public criticisms of homosexuality — suggests the merit of recognizing an alternative to overlapping consensus as the source of Catholic recognition of Rawlsian political liberalism: reciprocity.
- Jewish Fundamentalism and the Temple Mount: Who Will Build the Third Temple? By InbariMotti. Albany: State University of New York Press, 2009. 219 pp. $65.00 cloth, $29.95 paper Evolving Nationalism: Homeland, Identity and religion in Israel 1925–2005. By ShelefNadav. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2010. 296 pp. $69.95 cloth, $24.95 paper - Volume 4 Issue 3 - Samuel Peleg
- Political realism is often seen as vulnerable to the “Machiavellian temptation,” that is, to the bracketing out of moral principles in the conduct of statecraft. In this article, I explore the use of Thomist themes in the writings of Martin Wight (1913–1972), a seminal figure of the so-called English School of international relations theory. Scholars have commented on the Christian realist roots of the English School, but it is little noted that Wight's most famous essay, “Western Values in International Relations,” uses the language of Thomism. By exploring the use of Thomist concepts in Wight's thought and the parallels to be found in the thought of his contemporary, Thomist political philosopher Jacques Maritain, I show how he seeks to escape the realist temptation to Machiavellianism. I then go on to sketch out the possible shortcomings of this approach.
- In this analysis, we expand the debate on the place of religion in political science by using the predictions of Wald and Wilcox as our starting point. Following in their footsteps, we ask how political scientists have studied Islam since 2002 and identify the studies on Islam and Muslims at the flagship conference of the discipline, the annual meeting of the American Political Science Association. We evaluate not only the quantity but also the approaches employed by these studies. In order to gauge the balancing of roles (or lack thereof) between the discipline and area studies, we also take a closer look at the Middle East Studies Association, the largest association focused on the Middle East, North Africa and the Islamic world and its annual meetings during the same period. Our findings suggest that, unless carefully addressed, the prevailing patterns are likely to result in a crippling knowledge gap among political scientists.
- The Cartoons That Shook the World. By KlausenJytte. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009. 230 pp. $35.00 Cloth - Volume 4 Issue 2 - Karam Dana