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"More than any other recent book, this work sets out with absolute clarity and sometimes uncomfortable honesty the intolerable reality of life for Christians in the Middle East today ...a deeply intelligent picture of the situation, without cheap polemic or axe-grinding, this is a very important survey indeed."--Former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge University In 2013, alarmed by scant attention paid to the hardships endured by the 7.5 million Christians in the Middle East, journalist Klaus Wivel traveled to Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, and the Palestinian territories on a quest to learn more about their fate. He found an oppressed minority, constantly under threat of death and humiliation, increasingly desperate in the face of rising Islamic extremism and without hope that their situation will improve, or anyone will come to their aid. Wivel spoke with priests whose churches have been burned, citizens who feel like strangers in their own countries, and entire communities whose only hope for survival may be fleeing into exile. With the increase of religious violence in the past few years, this book is a prescient and unsettling account of a severely beleaguered religious group living, so it seems, on borrowed time. Wivel asks, why have we not done more to protect these people? Klaus Wivel is a Danish journalist who has been the New York correspondent for Weekendavisen, one of Denmark's most prestigious newspapers. He has written on a wide range of topics, with a focus on the Middle East.
In this collection of studies by James M. Powell, two related centres of attention can be seen. One is the campaigns undertaken by western Europeans in the eastern Mediterranean, chiefly in the late twelfth and thirteenth centuries - the Crusades - the reasons for them and manner in which they were organized and promoted. The other is the Kingdom of Sicily under Frederick II, himself a Crusader, and its society and economy, including its Muslim population. A characteristic feature is the author's interest in ordinary participants and the attempt to get behind the generalizations of macro-historians to the extent that may be possible.
In 1590 three hundred Scottish 'witches' were tried for plotting the murder of their King, James VI of Scotland (soon to be James I of England). James is known to have suffered from a morbid fear of violent death, and the trial heightened his anxiety over this apparently treasonous 'un-Christian' sect, and stimulated him to study the whole subject of witchcraft. 'Daemonologie' is the result of this royal research, detailing his opinions on the topic in the form of a Socratic dialogue between the sceptic Philomathes and witch-averse Epistemon, who reveals many aspects of witch-craft. The book consists of three sections, on magic, on sorcery and witchcraft, and on spirits and ghosts, and ends with a lurid account of the North Berwick witch trials, based on the evidence of Dr John Fian, the alleged head of the coven, whose 'confession' was obtained with the aid of thumbscrews, the Boot, and by the ripping out of his fingernails.
With respect to the countries of the world, this work addresses two basic questions: "How does religion affect politics in this country?" and "How does politics affect religion in this country?" Although there are many books on the topics of religion and politics, reference works that consider the two together are few, with those that do exist primarily addressing theory rather than trends. The present work does the latter, contextualizing them within regional and national boundaries. In so doing, it recognizes the power of political and religious ideas and movements on individuals, communities, and nations, making the work a valuable resource for several disciplines, among them political science, international relations, religion, and sociology. The work focuses on the interplay of religion and politics in countries around the world with an emphasis on the post-2000s. It is organized by global geographic regions including Africa, Central and South America, and the Middle East and presents countries alphabetically within those sections. Each region has a brief overview of the political-religious dynamics of the area so readers can compare and contrast the dynamics between and among countries in a region. The work also includes an introduction, sidebars, and a bibliography. * Covers major geographic regions such as Africa and South America and provides alphabetically arranged entries on topics related to religion and contemporary politics in particular countries * Cites works for further reading * Features essays within each section that compare and contrast the dynamics of religion and politics among the countries within that region * Contains sidebars that highlight key points and present interesting information * Provides a bibliography of the most important broad works on contemporary religion and politics in the modern world
Early modern Central Europe was the continent's most decentralized region politically and its most diverse ethnically and culturally. With the onset of the Reformation, it also became Europe's most religiously divided territory and potentially its most explosive in terms of confessional conflict and war. Focusing on the Holy Roman Empire and the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, this volume examines the tremendous challenge of managing confessional diversity in Central Europe between 1500 and 1800. Addressing issues of tolerance, intolerance and ecumenism, each chapter explores a facet of the complex dynamic between the state and the region's Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Utraquist, and Jewish communities. The development of religious toleration-one of the most debated questions of the early modern period-is examined here afresh, with careful consideration of the factors and conditions that led to both confessional concord and religious violence.
Piety and Rebellion examines the span of the Hasidic textual tradition from its earliest phases to the 20th century. The essays collected in this volume focus on the tension between Hasidic fidelity to tradition and its rebellious attempt to push the devotional life beyond the borders of conventional religious practice. Many of the essays exhibit a comparative perspective deployed to better articulate the innovative spirit, and traditional challenges, Hasidism presents to the traditional Jewish world. Piety and Rebellion is an attempt to present Hasidism as one case whereby maximalist religion can yield a rebellious challenge to conventional conceptions of religious thought and practice.
There is a long-standing fear of that which is not understood. Since September 11, 2001 the fear surrounding the violent elements of religion has led to heightened tensions. Research is thus essential to counteract the effects of 'religious xenophobia'. In this compelling book J.P. Larsson investigates religious violence, terrorism and armed conflict in order to deliver the understanding required for a more peaceful world and to allow for a framework of conflict transformation. This multi-disciplinary text will greatly interest those in the fields of international relations, theology and sociology.
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