Religion creating conflict and instability
- Feminism: Holm
He argues that there are inequalities within religious organisations and women are treated unfairly.Conflict created as they try and FIGHT AGAINTS OPPRESSION within religios org's
AO2: However, women's position in religion has IMPROVED which means that conflict has reduced i.e. the C of E has allowed the ordination of women and for them to become bishops and Reform Judaism has allowed women to become rabbis since 1972
Feminists also argue that conflict can be prevented if women just ACCEPT their position, remain PASSIVE and do not try and do anything to change their position
- Marxists: Marx
He argues that religion is an ideological state apparatus which reflects the ideas & interests of the ruling class. EXAMPLE: Halfe Caste System- India
CLASS CONSCIOUSNESS can be brought up where they become AWARE of their exploitation and thus create conflict to reduce this inequality
AO2: conflict reduced if they accept their position and dont change it- religion does this by promising them better afterlife, proving them with the 'opium', etc
More conflict and instability
- Otto Maduro: Liberation Theology
Maduro looked at CENTRAL AMERICA and used the example of Liberation Theology to show how religion created conflict. The priests were strongly opposed to right-wing military dictatorships and wanted to distribute power from the RICH TO THE POOR. They were also educating the poor and actively encouraging them to do something to reduce inequality.
Similarly, this is what GRAMSCI calls 'counter-hegemony' where the ruling class hegemony was challenged and the poor were presented with a more FAIR and JUST way of organising society- this made the poor FIGHT againts oppression.
- Fundamentalists: Bauman
They are tradionalists who REJECT RELIGIOUS PLURALISM and claim that there is only one version of the real truth. Anyone who thinks differently from them, this can result in conflict
- 9/11 attacks in the USA led by Osama Bin Laden
- Hamas, a Muslim fundamentalist group was elected to power the Gaza strip but they were againts the Israeli occupying their territory. Therefore, the muslims sponosored terrorist attacks and created war
- The Clash of Civilisations: Huntington
Conflict was intensified after the COLLAPSE of COMMUNISM in 1989 which Huntington called the 'wider clash of civilisations'. He argued that people see themselves as belonging to a civilisation that is linked with religion so their religious identity is imporant to them.
There are different types of civilisatins in society i.e. Western, Islamic, Chinese, Japanese, Hindu, Slavic-Orthodox, African , American, etc.
When these civilisations come into contact, conflict breaks through i.e. conflict between Islamic and Western civilisations.
AO2: However, Huntington can be criticised because he ignores that NOT all civilisations that come into contact conflict is created- could be harmony.
Armstrong also argues that conflict between civilisations is NOT always CAUSED BY RELIGION and could be caused by other non-religious factors.
I.e. conflict between the UK and Southern Ireland was about who contolled Northern Ireland
Conflict between Islam and Western civilisations was not as a result of religion but as a result of the AMERICAN FOREIGN POLICY i.e. USA often intervened in Muslim countries and supported groups which did not bring any prosperity to muslim people
AO2: religion can create stability
Religion does not always bring about conflict and instability but can create STABILITY and HARMONY
- Functionalist: Durkheim's example of the Australian Aborgines
- Malinowski- helped to reduce anxiety
- Bruce's case study of Martin Luther King shows how religion can reduce racial inequalitiy and bring about stability not conflict