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Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?: Demography, Religion and Radicalization Eric Kaufmann, School of Politics and Sociology, Birkbeck College, University.

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Presentation on theme: "Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?: Demography, Religion and Radicalization Eric Kaufmann, School of Politics and Sociology, Birkbeck College, University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Shall the Religious Inherit the Earth?: Demography, Religion and Radicalization Eric Kaufmann, School of Politics and Sociology, Birkbeck College, University of London,

2 Religiosity

3 Religious Fertility vs. Religious Decline "One of the most central injunctions of virtually all traditional religions is to strengthen the family, to encourage people to have children, to encourage women to stay home and raise children, and to forbid abortion, divorce, or anything that interferes with high rates of reproduction. As a result of these two interlocking trends, rich nations are becoming more secular, but the world as a whole is becoming more religious." (Norris and Inglehart 2004: 22-23, emphasis added)

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5 Hypothesis: a combination of higher religious fertility and immigration will lead to a growth in the religious population (defined in terms of belief) that exceeds the net loss of communicants through religious apostasy.

6 Results: Proportion Without Religion Assuming: Low secularization trend Constant secularization trend High secularization trend Austria, TFR 2001 Roman Catholics1.32 Protestants1.21 Muslims2.34 Others1.44 Without0.86 Total1.33

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9 Source WVS N=15197 cases. Question asked in Algeria, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria, Egypt, Azerbaijan, Bosnia, Iran, Morocco, Turkey, Uganda and Tanzania.

10 N.B. 'BP' refers to Bangladeshi and Pakistani; 'UK' refers to British-born and 'Foreign' to foreign-born

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13 Canadian Religion in Decline Canada 2004: 66% attend less than monthly, 19% no religion, up from 12% in Europe 2004: 72% attend less than monthly. 39% no religion. US 2004: 51% attend less than monthly. 14% no religion. 40% of Canadians have a low degree of religiosity, 31% are moderately religious and 29% are highly religious.' (Schellenberg & Clark 2006)

14 Future Religious Return? Immigrants more religious than native- born, and show no similar inclination to secularism Canadians with 'no religion' declined from 20% in 2000 to 19% in First decline since Could immigration and higher immigrant fertility be a possible factor? Would suggest demographically-driven religious revival in Canada, as in Europe and USA

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16 Source: Belanger 2006

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18 Canadian Immigration Currently and Historically 60% Asian, dominated by non- Muslims (Chinese, Indians, Philippinos) Demographic Transition and development may shift sources to Middle East and Africa in the future 2004 China and Hong Kong38,608 India28,183 Philippines13,900 Pakistan13,011 Iran6,491 United States6,470 Romania5,816 Great Britain5,353 South Korea5,351 Colombia4,600

19 Canadian Muslim Demography Moderate Sized Religious Group Fast-growing, perhaps at same rate or slightly slower than in W. Europe Falling fertility, modest level of immigration Urban concentration, as in Europe More middle-class character, as in USA I am unclear about 'demographic polarization' trends between moderates and fundamentalists

20 Demographic Radicalization Source: ‘The Moment of Truth’, Ha’aretz, 8 February 2007

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22 Decline of Liberal Protestants

23 USA: Denominational Projections to 2050

24 Zero Immigration Scenario

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26 Muslim World The religious cleavage between Islamists and Others (Secular Nationalists/Socialists/Liberals) Q: Will higher fertility endow Islamists with political leverage into the future? Berman & Stepanyan (2003) find a significant but modest link between Madrassa attendance and fertility in four countries This study uses WVS dataset on countries (depends on question)

27 Source: WVS N = 7436 respondents. Asked in Algeria, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Egypt.

28 Source: WVS N = 7412 respondents. Asked in Algeria, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Egypt.

29 Islamist Religiosity Younger, Educated are less Islamist, but effect is complex and there are exceptions (i.e. under 24s, university students) Urbanites more Islamist than rural population Higher education levels may modestly lower Islamism, but urbanization may raise it. Generational change will have little effect GDP per head unlikely to affect religiosity Nationalism and Islamism seem compatible

30 Education: - Town Size: + National Pride: + GDP per Capita: + Age: indeterminate Married/Children: weak + Country Ed.: - Country Fertility: +

31 Source: WVS N = 1649 respondents with High School or More, 3318 respondents with Less than High School. Asked in Algeria, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Egypt.

32 Source: WVS N = 2796 respondents in towns under 10,000 and 1561 respondents in cities over 100,000. Asked in Algeria, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria and Egypt.

33 Islamist Fertility Islamists in Muslim countries are more fertile; some evidence for sharpened fertility effect in more 'modern' contexts, i.e. cities, the educated But the growth of the Islamist population through higher fertility is still a long-term process, unlike Israel

34 Canada Will we see religious polarization ('demographic radicalization') within the Jewish, Christian and Muslim populations, as elsewhere? Anecdotal evidence of evangelical Protestant and ultra Orthodox Jewish demographic vitality, set against backdrop of secularization Canada generally reflects global fertility and retention trends in Abrahamic faiths Demographic radicalization not an imminent prospect in Canada, but cannot be ruled out for the longer term (i.e. to 2050)

35 Conclusion Canadian Muslim population is in the medium range for Western countries, with similar demography to other western Muslim populations Canada undergoing secularization process, but immigration will probably lead to a reversal in the future Global Evidence of higher fertility among religious literalists/fundamentalists Effect strongest in Judaism, followed by Christianity and Islam Canada will be affected by these developments


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