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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Literature Review: Fox, Jonathan. “Clash of Civilization or Clash of Religions? Which is a More Important Determinant of Ethnic Conflict?” Ethnicities, Volume 1, Issue 3. September 2001. Pages 295-320; Fox, Jonathan. “Is Islam More Conflict Prone Than Other Religions? A Cross-Sectional Study of Ethnoreligious Conflict”. Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, Volume 6, Issue 2. June 2000. Pages 1-24

Literature Review

            For this literature review, I selected two articles by Bar-Ilan University Department of Political Sciences Professor Jonathan Fox: his June 2000 article “Is Islam More Conflict Prone than Other Religions?” from the journal “Nationalism and Ethnic Politics” and his September 2001 article “Clash of Civilizations or Clash of Religions?” from the journal “Ethnicities”.

Part 1: Summary: “What kinds of questions does each study attempt to solve? What were their findings?”

            In his June 2000 Nationalism and Ethnic Politics article, Professor Fox points out that in the early 1990’s, in the year 1993, 17 out of 40, or 42% of Islamic ethnoreligious minorities engaged in political demonstrations and 13, or 32.5% engaged in some form of rebellion.  By contrast in the same year, only 7 of 29 Christian ethnoreligious minorities engaged in some form of rebellion and only ten percent engaged in political demonstrations. [Fox, 2000, Page 10] As a possible explanation for this phenomenon, Professor Fox points out that “Islamic regimes are more autocratic and repressive and less democratic”. [Fox, 2000, Page 13] Professor Fox also points out that religion is more important both in conflicts involving Islamic ethnoreligious minorities [Page 10] and in those involving Islamic majorities [Page 11] than in those involving Christian ethnoreligious minorities and majorities. Professor Fox’s data demonstrates that religion is most important to the conflict when both the majority and minority group are Islamic, “less so when one of them is Islamic and least important when neither group are Islamic” [Page 15] and that religious legitimacy is 50% “more important for conflicts involving Islamic majorities than for conflicts involving non-Islamic majorities, including those involving Christian majorities” [Page 11]. Again, Professor Fox offers an explanation for this data: that “religious legitimacy is significantly higher for Islamic regimes”. [Page 13] Fox defines political legitimacy as “the extent to which it is legitimate to invoke religion in political discourse” [Fox, Page 19]. Fox’s data shows that “Islamic minorities express the highest level of religious demands, are involved in conflicts with the highest level of religious legitimacy, score the highest on the composite measure for religious involvement in the conflict and are engaged in conflicts where, on average, religion is most relevant.” Fox argues that an explanation for the violent stereotype of militant Islam prevalent in Western media, policymaking and academic circles since the late 1970’s; which Fox does not endorse; is that the disproportional involvement of religion in conflicts involving Muslims is “foreign to the Western concept of separation of church and state” and so “may seem more threatening to Western eyes.” [Page 16]

            In his September 2001 article, Fox critiques the hypothesis of the “clash of civilizations” first proposed in 1992 by Harvard University Weatherhead Center for International Affairs Director and albert J. Weatherhead University Professor Samuel Huntington. Fox’s critique of Huntington’s hypothesis is the fact that there is “considerable overlap between Huntington’s concept of civilization and religion.” [Fox, 2001, Page 297] Professor Fox’s analysis shows that “most civilizational conflicts also involve religious differences and most conflict involving religious differences are also civilizational.” Fox argues that overlap between civilizational and religious differences “lends credence to the argument that Huntington’s concept of civilization is mostly a surrogate variable for religion” [Page 311], and that while there is considerable overlap between the two variables, “civilizations and religion are not one and the same.” [Page 304]

Part 2: Analysis: “What were the strengths and weaknesses of each study? What methodological challenges were there and were they acknowledged? How might you improve this research? Were there conflicting results?”

            In his June 2000 Nationalism and Ethnic Politics article, Professor Fox’s data shows that “the more Islamic groups are involved in an ethnoreligious conflict more important religion is to that conflict” [Page 15] and that the “level of autocracy and repression by Islamic regimes can explain much of the significance of religion to ethnic conflicts in which these regimes are engaged” [Page 13]. However, Fox points out that most Islamic ethnoreligious minorities do not live in Islamic states, and so while the fact that Islamic majority groups tend to have more autocratic government may explain some of the differences between the importance of religion in conflicts involving Islamic and non-Islamic minority groups, majority groups and the interaction between the two, it cannot explain all of them. Fox further argues that even if much of the importance of religion in ethnoreligious conflicts involving Islamic groups can be explained by regime type, “the question of why Islamic regimes tend to be disproportionally autocratic remains open.” [Page 16] Fox’s data shows that there is no “significant correlation between religious legitimacy and democracy, autocracy or political discrimination.” [Page 13] He points out that the explanation that it is the nature of the regime that is responsible for religion being an important issue does not account for several factors, including the importance of religion to Islamic minorities.
If Islam causes regimes to be more autocratic, the argument that the autocratic nature of a regime is responsible for religion being a factor in an ethnoreligious conflict is irrelevant.” [Fox, 2000, Page 16]
            Fox’s explanation for the lack of support for the violent stereotype of militant Islam prevalent in the West in the evidence examined in his analysis is the nature of the evidence itself, which focused on ethnoreligious conflict. Fox defines ethnoreligious conflict as “conflict between two ethnic groups who happen to be of different religions”. Fox points out “many of the violent conflicts that have contributed to the stereotype of the Islamic militant are between secular and religious Muslims who are all members of the same ethnic group.”

            In his September 2001 article, Professor Fox’s data shows that religious difference are “more important factors in the conflict behavior of majority groups and international actors than are civilizational differences”, but that civilizational differences “seem to be more important factors in determining the behavior of minority groups” [Page 311]. This results in an inability to definitively answer the question of whether religion’s impact on ethnic conflict is due to civilizational differences. Fox suggests that the “question of which is more important, religion or civilization, may be a moot point”, at least for ethnic conflict because of the possibility that religion and civilization are surrogate variables for culture and it is cultural differences that are the “true source of any perceived impact” of religion or civilization on ethnic conflict.

Conclusion: “What Areas of Further Inquiry Would Have Liked To Pursue Had You The Time? Apply at Least Five Concepts or Theories From Class Lecture Or Reading”.

            By comparing the importance of religion in Christian and Islamic ethnoreligious majority and minority groups in his 2000 article, Professor Fox is putting to the test to the concept of “functional equivalency”.  His conclusion, that much of the emphasis on religion in Islamic ethnoreligious minority groups can be attributed not only to the autocratic nature of the regimes in Islamic states, but to the fact that most Islamic ethnoreligious minority groups live in non-Muslim majority nations lends credence to concept of Jihadist as a reflexive reaction against secularization and westernization, as theorized by Charles Kurzman in “Bin Laden and Other Thoroughly Modern Muslims” [Boli, John and Lechner, Frank, eds. “The Globalization Reader”, 2012, page 391-395].
The 2004 article “Religion, Collective Action and the Onset of Armed Conflict in Developing Countries” by Matthias Basedau of the German Institute of global and Area Studies and Birte Pfeiffer of the Justus Liebig University of Giessen in the “Journal of Conflict Resolution”, as applied to the question “Are Religions More a Cause of Global Conflict, Solidarity, or Both?” is an example of the phenomenon of the “universalization of the particular”, and in doing so challenges the concept of the designation of countries as “developing”.          

1,306 Words
1.     Basedau, Matthias, Birte Pfeiffer, et al. “Bad Religion? Religion, Collective Action and the Onset of Armed Conflict in Developing Countries”.  Journal of Conflict Resolution Volume 60, Number 2, July 23, 2014. Pages 226-255:
2.     Fox, Jonathan. “Clash of Civilization or Clash of Religions? Which is a More Important Determinant of Ethnic Conflict?” Ethnicities, Volume 1, Issue 3. September 2001. Pages 295-320:
3.     Fox, Jonathan. “Is Islam More Conflict Prone Than Other Religions? A Cross-Sectional Study of Ethnoreligious Conflict”. Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, Volume 6, Issue 2. June 2000. Pages 1-24:
4.     Seul, Jeffrey. “Ours is the Way of God: Religion, Identity and Intergroup Conflict”. Journal of Peace Research. Volume 36, Issue 5. September 1999. Pages 553-569:

Literature Review: Anderson, Kenneth and Rieff, David. “Global Civil Society: A Skeptical View”. In Kaldor, Mary, et al., Eds. “Global Civil Society 2004/5”. Sage Publications. 2005. Part 1: “Concepts of Global Civil Society”, Pages 2-15; Chandhoke, Neera. “The Limits of Global Civil Society”. In Kaldor, Mary, et al., Eds. “Global Civil Society 2002”. Oxford University Press. 2002. Pages 35-53; Kaldor, Mary. “The Idea of Global Civil Society”. International Affairs, Volume 79, Issue 3. May 23, 2003. Pages 583-59


For this literature review, I chose two chapters from the University of London School of Economics and Political Science’s  “Global Civil Society” yearbook edited by Heidelberg University Max Weber Institute of Sociology Center for Social Investment and Innovation Academic Director and Professor of Sociology Helmut Anheier, University of Amsterdam Professor of Political Science Marlies Glasius and University of London School of Economics and Political Science Civil Society and Human Security Research Unit Director and Professor of Global Governance Mary: University of Delhi Professor of Political Science Neera Chandhoke’s Chapter 2: “The Limits of Global Civil Society” for the 2002 LSE GSC Yearbook and the Chapter 1: “Global Civil Society: A Skeptical View” by American University Washington College of Law Professor of International Law Kenneth Anders and David Rieff of the New School University for Social Research from the 2005 yearbook.
Chandhoke writes, “As the upholders of an ethical canon that applies across nation and cultures, international actors in civil society now define as well as set the moral norms… They command this kind of attention because they have access to the international media, they possess high profiles and they put forth their idea in dramatic ways.” [Chandhoke, 2002, Page 40]    
Anderson and Rieff view the riser of transnational non-governmental organizations as what they label a quasi-religious revival of the earlier European and American missionary movements [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Page 7]. They suggest that what they label the global civil society “movement” imagines themselves as the bearer of universal values  [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Pages 5-6], using globalization as its vehicle for disseminating universal values, but are skeptical that the fundamental moral values of the movement appear to be about human rights rather than democracy, seeming to present human rights as a form of universalism elevated into a set of transcendental but ultimately mystical goals, values and beliefs [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Page 8] and a substitute for democracy as a value and the good that it spawns. They argue that what they call the “democracy deficit” [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Page 7], to satisfy the requirements of a democracy while recognizing the limits of electoral participation in something intended to encompass the who world, is buttressed by the intertwined quests for legitimacy by non-governmental organizations and international organizations such as the United Nations, each legitimizing the other in a system that is undemocratic and incapable of becoming democratic [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Page 6]. They argue that this is what drives what they label the “severe inflation” of ideological rhetoric that international and transnational non-governmental organizations constitute global civil society, a term they find conceptually incoherent.
Chandhoke writes, “The space cleared by the rolling back of the state became known as “civil society”, and [non-governmental organizations] were transformed into the guardians of civil society even as they subcontracted for the state.” [Chandhoke, 2002, Page 43]
            Anderson and Rieff perceive the global civil society movement as seeking to universalize the “ultimately parochial” model of the integration of the European Union, believing it represents a universal model for humankind on a planetary level; the “fetishizing” of a particular historical and cultural experience whose outcome is far from clear. [Anderson and Rieff, 2005, Page 8]. They are skeptical whether the values the movement embodies and espouses are as desirable or as complete as supporters claim [Page 9]. 


1.     Anderson, Kenneth and Rieff, David. “Global Civil Society: A Skeptical View”. In Kaldor, Mary, et al., Eds. “Global Civil Society 2004/5”. Sage Publications. 2005. Part 1: “Concepts of Global Civil Society”, Pages 2-15
2.     Chandhoke, Neera. “The Limits of Global Civil Society”. In Kaldor, Mary, et al., Eds. “Global Civil Society 2002”. Oxford University Press. 2002. Pages 35-53. 
3.     Kaldor, Mary. “The Idea of Global Civil Society”. International Affairs, Volume 79, Issue 3. May 23, 2003. Pages 583-593:
4.     Kumar, Krishan. “Global Civil Society”. European Journal of Sociology, Volume 48, Issue 3. December 2007. Pages 413-434:

5.     Wild, Leni. “Strengthening Global Civil Society”. Institute for Public Policy Research. Monday April 3, 2006: 

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Sociology of Globalization Literature Review

What are the consequences from moving away from nation-based economics toward, a more globalized one?”

Literature Review:
In his 2000 Committee for Development Policy Paper “Economic Globalization: Trends, Risks and Risk Prevention”, Che Kiang University Department of Management Dean and Professor and University of Peking Professor and Ph.D. Director Gao Shangquan begins by stating his premise: that economic globalization “reflects the continuing expansion and mutual integration of market frontiers and is an irreversible trend for the economic development in the whole world”.
Professor Shangquan then lists two “enormous risks” posed by the globalization process. The first is that economic globalization has expanded the gap between what Shangquan refers to as “the North and the South”, with fewer than 20 countries benefitting from economic globalization and 80% of capital flowing among the United States and Western European and Eastern Asian countries [Page 4]. Second, Shangquan writes that a “self-fulfilling mechanism” that he calls the “sheep-flocking effect” of international financial markets under open economic conditions strengthens developing countries’ risk of being “concussed” by “unfavorable external factors” of monetary crisis and the “concussion” suffered by developing countries by “weakening their capacity of macroeconomic control and regulation” [Page 5].
Shangquan goes on to recommend three measures to be taken to prevent and “dissolve” the risks of economic globalization to developing countries.
The first is the establishment of an organization for global economic regulation that can play the role of “final lender” all over the world, providing “floating financial relief and support” to restore the confidence of international investors and a regulatory system strengthening the “monitoring and supervision” over financial institutions [Page 6].
The second is a guarantee of growth sharing, making the benefits of the progress of globalization available to every country [Page 7].
The third is strengthening of government functions of protecting intellectual property rights, ensuring legal fulfillment of contracts, and providing infrastructure; a major government role in establishing incentive and constraining mechanisms in line with corporate governance so as to improve efficiency; and a focus of government efforts on stimulating rapid scientific, technological and educational development and increasing investment in developing human capital [Page 8].

In his January 2015 paper, European Council on Foreign Relations and Foreign Policy Center Founder and Director Mark Leonard presents “Seven Challenges to Globalization” from Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Moscow Center Director Demitri Trenin, Kyoto University Graduate School of Management Adjunct Professor Takashi Mitachi, United States Alternate Executive Director to the International Monetary Fund and New America Foundation Global Strategic Finance Initiative co-Founder and Director Douglas Rediker, Princeton University Department of Economics Visiting Assistant Professor and Paris Institute of Political Studies Professor of Economics Sergei Guriev, New York University Professor Ian Bremmer and Council on Foreign Relation Maurice Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies Director Michael Levi.

In his June 4, 2010 paper “Issues, Lessons and Future Challenges” for the Brookings Institution, Australian National University John Crawford School of Public Policy Center for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis Professor of Economics, Australian Center for Economic Research on Health Director and Frank Lowy Institute for International Policy Professorial Fellow Warwick McKibbin summarizes the four questions and six themes [Page 2] of a conference convened in Sydney Australia on March 18, 2010 by Australian National University, the Brookings Institution and the Lowly Institute for International Policy.
The first has to do with the nature of infrastructure: the main characteristics of infrastructure that make it special to a country’s economy and the salient features that distinguish it from other factors of production.
The second has to do with the returns to infrastructure investment. McKibbin argues that transport infrastructure in particular facilitates agglomeration economies and helps to realize the returns to agglomeration; helps to create new markets and reduces costs to access markets; and spurs innovation and facilitates the dissemination of knowledge; leading to an increase in living standards and having a disproportionate effect on the incomes and welfare of the poor [Page 3]. He argues that transport infrastructure contributes significantly to the economic efficiency of an economy by lowering prices, reducing the cost of private production, raising productivity, reducing transport costs and lowering inventories [Page 4].
The third has to do with how infrastructure should be provided and the role of the private sector [Page 5].
The fourth has to do with infrastructure in developing countries and whether infrastructure provision should be affected by the stage of a country’s economic development. McKibbin argues that developing countries are particularly aware of their infrastructure needs and that infrastructure helps alleviate poverty and provides an environment in which the poor can grow their way out of poverty: infrastructure investment providing access to energy, clean water and transport may mean the difference between life and death for low-income countries [Page 11].

1.     Bhatia, Karan and Bremmer, Ian, et al. “Geo-Economics: Seven Challenges to Globalization”. World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council. January 2015:
2.     Henckel, Timo and McKibbin, Warwick. “The Economics of Infrastructure in a Globalized World: Issues, Lessons and Future Challenges”. Brookings Institution. June 4, 2010:

3.     Shangquan, Gao. “Economic Globalization: Trends, Risks and Risk Prevention”. United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs Development Policy and Analysis Division Committee for Development Policy. 2000: