Research On Religion
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A weekly podcast exploring academic research on religion and featuring top scholars in history, sociology, political science, economics and religious studies.
||Murat Iyigun on Monotheism, Conflict, Europe, the Ottomans, and the Blues||Are monotheisms better at establishing sociopolitical stability than civilizations with polytheistic religions? And to what extent do monotheistic civilizations influence the socio-economic development of one another? In particular, did the Ottoman Empire change the course of European history via its military advances into southeast Europe at a key moment in time? Prof. Murat Iyigun, the Stanford Calderwood Endowed Chair in Economics at the University of Colorado, answers these questions... Keep on reading: Murat Iyigun on Monotheism, Conflict, Europe, the Ottomans, and the Blues||7/26/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Louis Markos on the Poetry of Heaven & Hell||C.S. Lewis once noted that humans are the only species to fear their own dead. Not surprisingly, visions of the afterlife -- or of heaven and hell -- loom large within literature. Prof. Louis Markos, the Robert H. Ray Chair in the Humanities at Houston Baptist University, explains how these visions have changed over time, starting back with pre-Christian pagan writers such as Plato, and all the way through our contemporary period with an emphasis on C.S. Lewis. The interview also mingles... Keep on reading: Louis Markos on the Poetry of Heaven & Hell||7/19/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Paul Kubicek on Islam, Political Islam, and Democracy||Can Islamic nations craft functioning democracies? While a cursory glance at the Arab Middle East would suggest the difficulty with such a task, Dr. Paul Kubicek, professor of political science at Oakland University, discusses his comparative research that shows a number of tentative successes with democracy in the Muslim world. We discuss Turkey and a number of other countries that receive little attention in the popular media such as Senegal, Mali, Tunisia, and Bangladesh. While many... Keep on reading: Paul Kubicek on Islam, Political Islam, and Democracy||7/12/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Gregory Popcak on Religion, Psychology, & Seven Longings||Religion and psychology are often posed in contradistinction to one another, with the former focusing on faith and the later on science. Nonetheless, faith-based mental health and relationship counseling exists and can be very effective. To discuss this general topic, we invite Dr. Gregory Popcak, founder of Pastoral Solutions Institute and author of numerous books (see below), to talk about his work and how spirituality informs psychology and vice versa. We begin our conversation with Gr... Keep on reading: Gregory Popcak on Religion, Psychology, & Seven Longings||7/5/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Phoenix Moomaw on Ronald Reagan’s Faith (Our 250th Episode!)||For our annual Fourth of July show, and our 250th episode, we invite our very first freshly-minted high school graduate, Phoenix Moomaw of The Bear Creek School, to discuss his recently completed senior project investigating the faith of President Ronald Reagan. Phoenix is well-positioned for this research project given that his grandfather -- Donn Moomaw -- was Ronald Reagan's pastor at Bel Air Presbyterian Church from the time that Reagan was an actor, his tenure as governor of California,... Keep on reading: Phoenix Moomaw on Ronald Reagan’s Faith (Our 250th Episode!)||6/28/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Jim McGuffey on Church Security (encore presentation)||In the wake of several highly publicized shootings, we look at how safe churches are, and what they can do to improve their safety, with Jim McGuffey, and independent security consultant with A.C.E. Security Consultants LLC and an expert on church security. We start with Jim’s background, both religious and professional, to understand where his insights into this issue come from. Jim spent time in the military, civilian police, and the armored car business before setting out with his own... Keep on reading: Jim McGuffey on Church Security (encore presentation)||6/21/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Jay Hein on the Quiet Revolution of Religious Social Work||During the 1990s, the provision of welfare in the United States went through a profound change as cities, states, and the federal government began partnering with faith-based organizations to provide a wide array of services ranging from drug rehabilitation to prisoner re-entry to community development. Jay Hein, president of the Sagamore Institute and Baylor's ISR, details this history of this approach dating back to George HW Bush's "thousand points of light," through the Clinton... Keep on reading: Jay Hein on the Quiet Revolution of Religious Social Work||6/14/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Matthew Isaacs on Religion & Ethnic Rebellion||When does religion play a role in ethnic rebellion and when does it remain irrelevant? Matthew Isaacs, a PhD candidate in political science at Brandeis University, adopts an economic model of religion to explain that when denominations are in competition with one another, and when they are facing declining resources, religious rhetoric will be used more frequently in mobilizing groups involved in ethnic turbulence. Our conversation begins with a discussion of how he came upon his dissertati... Keep on reading: Matthew Isaacs on Religion & Ethnic Rebellion||6/7/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Carrie Miles on Religion, Gender, and Missionaries||What is the relationship between religion, economics, and gender? Dr. Carrie Miles -- senior scholar in residence at Chapman University and non-resident scholar at Baylor's Institute for Studies of Religion -- discusses her path-breaking work on this topic, as well as her work as executive director of Empower International Ministries. Our conversation winds through Mormon theology, Genesis, the industrial revolution, and countries in Africa to explore how both economic production and... Keep on reading: Carrie Miles on Religion, Gender, and Missionaries||5/31/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
||Proselytism, Humanitarianism, and Development: A Panel Discussion||Proselytism is as old as religion itself. Nearly all spiritual faiths seek to expand the number of adherents that they have via communicating with people not within their faith tradition. But to what extent is proselytism a "bad thing" for society, perhaps as a form of cultural imperialism? How has religious proselytism impacted socio-economic development over time? How do humanitarian acts factor into proselytism and economic development? Thomas Farr, director of the Religious Freedom... Keep on reading: Proselytism, Humanitarianism, and Development: A Panel Discussion||5/24/2015||Free||View In iTunes|
Sophisticated and fun
Tony Gill makes research on religion compelling and accessible.
Scholarly, practical, real life, and fun
Great podcast. I listen weekly. It has a great variety.
Tremendous resource for the study of religion & politics
Religion and politics researchers are tremendously fortunate Dr. Gill produces such a terrific resource.