Title

Is Organized Religion Killing Democracy? An Analysis of How The Presence of Religious Monopoly Within A Country Affects Individuals’ Opinions On Democracy

Lead Author Major

International Relations

Lead Author Status

Senior

Format

Oral Presentation

Faculty Mentor Name

William Herrin

Faculty Mentor Email

wherrin@pacific.edu

Faculty Mentor Department

School of International Studies

Abstract/Artist Statement

Since September 11th, 2001, Islamophobia in the United States, other “Western” countries, and their allies has been on the rise. More recently, it seems to become even more salient because of the current U.S. administration. Yuchtman-Ya’ar and Alkalay’s “Political Attitudes in the Muslim World” highlights one common premise for disparagement; that Islam is incompatible with democracy. This work studies and expands upon the same premise. It analyzes whether Islam or any other religion that holds a “religious monopoly” within a country affects individuals’ attitudes toward democracy in that country. I analyze data from the World Values Survey as well as economic indicators to help isolate the effects of religious monopolies on those attitudes. I divide countries into those with a religious majority and those without, and identify whether a majority is a religious monopoly. I also identify the dominant religion in each country with a majority. I expect to find that religious monopoly, no matter the religion, has a negative effect on individuals’ attitudes toward democracy, but I do not expect to find that majority Muslim countries have a significantly more negative effect on individuals’ attitudes compared to other religious monopolies.

Location

DeRosa University Center, Room 211

Start Date

27-4-2018 1:10 PM

End Date

27-4-2018 1:29 PM

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Apr 27th, 1:10 PM Apr 27th, 1:29 PM

Is Organized Religion Killing Democracy? An Analysis of How The Presence of Religious Monopoly Within A Country Affects Individuals’ Opinions On Democracy

DeRosa University Center, Room 211

Since September 11th, 2001, Islamophobia in the United States, other “Western” countries, and their allies has been on the rise. More recently, it seems to become even more salient because of the current U.S. administration. Yuchtman-Ya’ar and Alkalay’s “Political Attitudes in the Muslim World” highlights one common premise for disparagement; that Islam is incompatible with democracy. This work studies and expands upon the same premise. It analyzes whether Islam or any other religion that holds a “religious monopoly” within a country affects individuals’ attitudes toward democracy in that country. I analyze data from the World Values Survey as well as economic indicators to help isolate the effects of religious monopolies on those attitudes. I divide countries into those with a religious majority and those without, and identify whether a majority is a religious monopoly. I also identify the dominant religion in each country with a majority. I expect to find that religious monopoly, no matter the religion, has a negative effect on individuals’ attitudes toward democracy, but I do not expect to find that majority Muslim countries have a significantly more negative effect on individuals’ attitudes compared to other religious monopolies.