Religious Appeals in Power Politics (Hardcover)
Religious Appeals in Power Politics examines how states use, or attempt to use, confessional appeals to religious belief and conscience to advance political strategies and objectives. Through case studies of the United States, Saudi Arabia, and Russia, Peter S. Henne demonstrates that religion, although not as high profile or well-funded a tool as economic sanctions or threats of military force, remains a potent weapon in international relations.
Public policy analysis often minimizes the role of religion, favoring military or economic matters as the "important" arenas of policy debate. As Henne shows, however, at transformative moments in political history, states turn to faith-based appeals to integrate or fragment international coalitions. Henne highlights Saudi Arabia's 1960s rivalry with Egypt, the United States's post-9/11 leadership in the global war on terrorism, and the Russian Federation's contemporary expansionism both to reveal the presence and power of calls for religious unity and to emphasize the uncertainty and anxiety such appeals can create. Religious Appeals in Power Politics offers a bold corrective to those who consider religion as tangential to military or economic might.
About the Author
Peter S. Henne is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Vermont. He is the author of Islamic Politics, Muslim States, and Counterterrorism Tensions.