Religion between ethics and ideology

Authored by: Joseph A. Camilleri

The Routledge Handbook of Religion, Politics and Ideology

Print publication date:  August  2021
Online publication date:  August  2021

Print ISBN: 9780367417826
eBook ISBN: 9780367816230
Adobe ISBN:


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The relationship of religion to ideology has given rise to competing interpretations, none of which offers a fully satisfying explanation of what is a complex and elusive set of interconnections. Some have stressed the ideological preferences and tendencies of religious leaders and movements intent on defending doctrinal positions and institutional interests (Rachik 2009). Others have argued that religion is a crucial lever on which states and empires often rely to legitimate their rule and even military expeditions (Beyers 2015). Others still see religion as a socially and culturally conservative force serving primarily as an instrument of acculturation and assimilation into the dominant ideology of the times, not least the consumerist ideology of late capitalism (Martin 2014, 141–156).

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