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Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods before Me

Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods before Me
Why Governments Discriminate against Minorities


  • Publication planned for: February 2020
  • availability: Not yet published - available from February 2020
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108488914

£ 75.00

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About the Authors
  • This book is among the most thorough and comprehensive analysis of the causes of religious discrimination to date, complete with detailed illustrations and anecdotes. Jonathan Fox examines the causes of government-based religious discrimination (GRD) against 771 minorities in 183 countries over the course of twenty-five years, while offering possible reasons for why some minorities are discriminated against more than others. Fox illustrates the complexities inherent in the causes of GRD, which can emerge from secular ideologies, religious monopolies, anti-cult policies, security concerns and more. Western democracies tend to discriminate more than Christian-majority countries in the developing world, whether they are democratic or not. While the causes of GRD are ubiquitous, they play out in vastly different ways across world regions and religious traditions. This book serves as a method for better understanding this particular form of discrimination, so that we may have the tools to better combat it and foster compassion across people of different religions and cultures.

    • This book is the most thorough and comprehensive analysis of the causes of religious discrimination to date
    • Offers increased accessibility for readers without training in statistical methodology, since the book provides detailed illustrations and anecdotes for each finding
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods Before Me is, to date, the most systematic and thorough analysis of contemporary governmental discrimination against minorities. It is an invaluable resource for scholars and students of religion and politics.' Jocelyne Cesari, University of Birmingham and Georgetown University, Washington, DC

    'In this book, Fox builds on his extensive body of work, turning his attention to the timely and crucial topic of government-sanctioned religious discrimination. Fox also usefully looks into societal religious discrimination. Through his analysis, Fox presents readers with a huge amount of information on the nature and causes of religious discrimination, and makes the case for scholars and policymakers to incorporate religion into their attempts to make sense of the world.' Peter S. Henne, University of Vermont

    'Relying on more recent and even more extensive data than his previous studies, Fox convincingly challenges many dearly held assumptions. Liberal democracies are not the most religiously tolerant, and secular and religious ideologies alike are a source of increased government regulation of religion.' Roger Finke, Pennsylvania State University

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    Product details

    • Publication planned for: February 2020
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108488914
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • contains: 18 b/w illus. 42 tables
    • availability: Not yet published - available from February 2020
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction
    2. Government-based religious discrimination
    3. Societal discrimination
    4. Support, regulation and religious regime as causes of GRD in the Muslim World
    5. Non-orthodox Christian-majority democracies in the West and Europe
    6. Orthodox, Buddhist and communist states
    7. The rest 1: democracies
    8. The rest 2: non-democracies
    9. Conclusions.

  • Author

    Jonathan Fox, Bar-Ilan University, Israel
    Jonathan Fox is the Yehuda Avner Professor of Religion and Politics at Bar-Ilan University, Israel, and director of the Religion and State Project. He writes about government religion policy, religious freedom, and religious conflict.

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