War and Religion in the Secular Age
Faith and Interstate Armed Conflict Onset
Is religion a factor in initiating interstate armed conflict, and do different religions have different effects? Breaking new ground in political science, this book explores these questions both qualitatively and quantitively, concluding that the answer is yes.
Previous studies have focused on conflict within states or interstate aggression with overtly religious motivations; in contrast, Brown shows how religion affects states’ propensities to militarize even disputes that are not religious in nature. Different religions are shown to have different influences on those propensities, and those influences are linked to the war ethics inculcated in those religions. The book analyses and classifies war ethics contained in religious scripture and other religious classics, teachings of religions’ contemporary epistemic communities, and religions’ historical narratives. Using data from the new Religious Characteristics of States dataset project, qualitative studies are combined with empirical measurements of governments’ institutional preferences and populations’ cultures.
This book will provide interesting insights to scholars and researchers in international security studies, political science, international law, sociology, and religious studies.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Introduction Chapter 2: How Religious War Ethics Translate to State Action Chapter 3: Research Design, Independent Variable, and Preliminary Results Chapter 4: The Restrictive War Ethic in Christianity Chapter 5: The Permissive War Ethic in Islam Chapter 6: The Bi-Modal War Ethic in Buddhism Chapter 7: Conclusion
Davis Brown is a Senior Research Associate at the Association of Religion Data Archives, a Non-Resident Fellow at Baylor University Institute for Studies of Religion, and is co-Principal Investigator of the Religious Characteristics of States dataset project.