Read e-book online After Secularism: Rethinking Religion in Global Politics PDF

By Erin K. Wilson (auth.)

ISBN-10: 0230355315

ISBN-13: 9780230355316

ISBN-10: 1349331538

ISBN-13: 9781349331536

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Extra resources for After Secularism: Rethinking Religion in Global Politics

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The chapter is divided into three sections. The first section provides a brief overview of secularism and secularization theory. It highlights the complex and changing nature of secularism in part to acknowledge the depth and breadth of thinking in this area, but also to highlight the theoretical and ideological nature of secularism as it has manifested within 28 Subordinating Religion 29 International Relations and the social sciences more broadly. Secularism is not objective truth but is a series of assumptions and ‘truth claims’ (Freeden 2003; Steger 2008: 211) that seek to decontest the nature of social and political reality.

This exclusionary dualism has manifested 32 After Secularism in various other areas of social and political theory and practice, including within International Relations, as we shall explore in the third section of this chapter. For our purposes, the most significant manifestation of this exclusionary dualism has occurred with relation to the nature of religion itself, which we will investigate in depth in Chapter 2. ‘Secular’ and ‘secularism’ have been and continue to be significant characteristics ascribed to the West within International Relations.

The implication of Weber’s work is that the West has achieved the evolutionary point where rational thought has replaced religion in explaining social and natural phenomena. Consequently, the influence of religion is significantly reduced, if not absent altogether, and therefore only of historical importance. This assumption about the increasing irrelevance of religion permeated the social sciences, including political science and International Relations, throughout much of the twentieth century.

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After Secularism: Rethinking Religion in Global Politics by Erin K. Wilson (auth.)


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