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Review of the Literature - Essay Example

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Name Instructor Class July 9, 2011 Review of Literature Religion has been systematically removed from the industrial relations (IR) literature, but this move has not been pragmatically and theoretically appropriate, particularly if the international community wants to have a complete understanding of social reality and if it wants to achieve global governance (Fox and Sandler; Hurd; Kubalkova)…
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Download file to see previous pages Some of the roots of this omission are the West-centric approaches of IR and rise of modernist theorists that highlight the practicality and plurality of the secular versus the religious. This paper reviews the concepts and theories on the resurgence of religion as a legitimate institution in shaping the public sphere and IR. Realist, liberal, and constructivist IR theories neglect the role that religion plays in the formation of nation-states and the development of international relations, and new theories on the religious should be produced to integrate religion into IR discourse. In “Religious Resurgence,” Elizabeth Shakman Hurd suggests a new approach to religion and international relations that confronts the realist, liberal, and constructivist assumptions that eliminated religion in Western politics. She argues that the religious has political authority, since it impacts local, national, and international politics. She suggests religious resurgence that has core concepts, which would invite diverse theological politics. The chapter “The Overlooked Dimension” shows that Fox and Sandler agree with Hurd that religion should be brought into IR studies. Fox and Sandler stress that religion may not be the driving force in world politics, but IR would not be completely examined without considering the nation-state’s religious dimension. Religious legitimacy, they assert, affects policy makers and civil societies, as well as local religious conflicts that cross borders. They ask for western social scientists to insert religion into their social researches, not as a peripheral or incidental subject, but as an additional basis for organizing human society and governance. Religious resurgence underscores the pivotal role of religion in IR, since it is a fundamental component in most cultures and civilizations, and so religion should be viewed as a crucial driving force in international relationships. Hurd calls religious resurgence as the attempt of the religious to shape the secular in domestic and international levels. It is an attempt that found expression in various religious movements and activities, both traditional and fundamentalist. These expressions underline the power of religion in renewing traditional values and relationships. Kubalkova develops the concept of International Political Theology (IPT) in “Towards an International Political Theology.” IPT does not only focus on power and wealth, as traditional IR does, but includes the values and meaning that people place in human existence. She confirms the resurgence of the religious in IR discourse, because religion gives meaning to human existence and direction. She speaks from the perspective of constructivism, which is unlike positivism that sees religion as a direct opposite of reason. Kubalkova argues that the community of states adopts and changes rules and standards that also coincide or oppose religious beliefs and practices. She proposes to use constructivism as the theoretical viewpoint to include religion, because it is more practical than positivism, as the former uses social construction in analyzing diverse interacting agencies and their effects on national and IR realities. Richard Falk, in “A Worldwide Religious Resurgence in an Era of Globalization and Apocalyptic Terrorism,” ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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