Religion and Human Security: A Global Perspective

ISBN : 9780199827756

James K. Wellman, Jr.; Clark Benner Lombardi
344 Pages
177 x 234 mm
Pub date
Aug 2012
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This volume of essays explores the long-unstudied relationship between religion and human security throughout the world. The 1950s marked the beginning of a period of extraordinary religious revival, during which religious political-parties and non-governmental organizations gained power around the globe. Until now, there has been little systematic study of the impact that this phenomenon has had on human welfare, except of a relationship between religious revival to violence. The authors of these essays show that religion can have positive as well as negative effects on human wellbeing. They address a number of crucial questions about the relationship between religion and human security: Under what circumstances do religiously motivated actors tend to advance human welfare, and under what circumstances do they tend to threaten it? Are members of some religious groups more likely to engage in welfare-enhancing behavior than in others? Do certain state policies tend to promote security-enhancing behavior among religious groups while other policies tend to promote security-threatening ones? In cases where religious actors are harming the welfare of a population, what responses could eliminate that threat without replacing it with another? Religion and Human Security shows that many states tend to underestimate the power of religious organizations as purveyors of human security. Governments overlook both the importance of human security to their populations and the religious groups who could act as allies in securing the welfare of their people. This volume offers a rich variety of theoretical perspectives on the nuanced relationship between religion and human security. Through case studies ranging from Turkey, Egypt, and Pakistan, to the United States, Northern Ireland, and Zimbabwe, it provides important suggestions to policy makers of how to begin factoring the influence of religion into their evaluation of a population's human security and into programs designed to improve human security around the globe.


1. Clark Lombardi and James K. Wellman, Jr.: Introduction: Religion and Human Security: An Understudied Relationship
2. James K. Wellman, Jr.: The Dance of Desire in Religion and Human Security.
3. Murat Somer: The Janus-Faced Relation of Religious Actors and Human Security: Islamic and Secular Values in Turkey
4. Charles McDaniel: The Role of Human Security in the Contest between the Egyptian Government and the Muslim Brotherhood
5. C. Christine Fair and Clark Lombardi: Popular Muslim Attitudes Towards Violent Islamic Groups: The Case of Pakistan
6. Karen Bhangoo: Networking through Religion: The Case of Malerkotla
7. Rowena Robinson: Indian Muslim Leadership: Predicaments and Possibilities for Human Security
8. Jonathan Warren: 'A Little with God is a Lot': Popular Religion and Human Security in the Land of the Brazilian Colonels
9. C. Matthew Samson, Davidson College, Interrogating Human Security and Religion in Guatemala
10. Gladys Ganiel: Striking a Balance: Christianity and the Challenges of Long Term Human Security in Zimbabwe
11. James Tiburcio: Beyond Basic Human Security: The Role of Religious Institutions in Angola
12. Emily Morrison Griffin: In Violence and in Peace: The Role of Religion and Human Security in Northern Ireland
13. Lucien Leustean: Eastern Christianity and Security in Post-War Europe
14. Sayres Rudy: Washed By a Deluge: The Religious Struggle for Human Security in Algeria and Poland
15. Daniel A. Metraux: The Soka Gakkai and Human Security

About the author: 

James K. Wellman is Associate Professor, Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington. Clark Lombardi is Associate Professor, School of Law, University of Washington.

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