Nation, Religion and Identity in the Contemporary World.

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 17:30-19:20
RC18 Political Sociology (host committee)

Language: English

Historically religious identity has been connected to blood and land. Human societies have come to exist based on kinship, common territory and a common god to worship. With the advent of modernity the idea of nation-state has emphasized on diminished religious identity in favour of national identity. But today we are witnessing a resurgence of religious identities and it, in many cases, threatens national identities. Nation building is a tricky affair based on a very subtle balance between various parochial identities and national distinctiveness. Today, for various reasons, we are experiencing the revival of religious identities often disturbing this balance across nations of the world. In almost all parts of the world we now observe communal conflict, violence, ethnic cleansing, religion-based terrorism, and religious fundamentalism. These factors have challenged national identity and threatened national characters of countries across the world. Taking this observation as the basis of our deliberation the session proposes to reflect upon the emergence of religious identity in contemporary time and to answer how religious identity is interacting with national identity. The session also intends to critically examine the role of state in the emergence of religious identity as well as the state response towards it. Identity politics can strengthen as well as weaken democracy. Research papers primarily focusing on the following themes will be accepted for presentation:

  1. Emerging religious identities and their impact on national identity.
  2. Role of state in emerging religious identity.
  3. National Identity and New Religious Movements (NRMs).
  4. Religious diversity and national identity.
Session Organizer:
Khirod MOHARANA, University of Allahabad, India
Khirod MOHARANA, University of Allahabad, India
Oral Presentations
Religion in and Against National Identity
Ian MORRISON, The American University in Cairo, Egypt
Post-Christian Europe and Modern Russian Identity
Andrey ANDREEV, Institute of Sociology, Moscow, Russian Federation
Between Religious and National Identity: (Re-)Converts to Islam in Switzerland
Amir SHEIKHZADEGAN, University of Fribourg, Switzerland; Michael NOLLERT, University of Fribourg, Switzerland
Distributed Papers
Nation, Religion and Social Conflict
Mohammad SHARIFI, Jawaharlal Nehru university, India
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