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Religion and the State: The Politics of Social Control in Myanmar and the United States

Political Authority, Social Control and Public Policy

ISBN: 978-1-78756-049-9, eISBN: 978-1-78756-048-2

ISSN: 2053-7697

Publication date: 4 July 2019

Abstract

At times religious majorities seek not only to participate in the public square, to make policy, but also to exercise complete control of political and cultural institutions. In many nations, from Christians in the United States to Buddhists in Myanmar, some religious and government leaders share the goal of complete religious control over their societies. What happens to the religions and to the society when these religious and government leaders are successful? What happens to the religion when a state controls, supports, and promotes that religion? This chapter uses the case histories of the repression of the Muslim minority by the Buddhists nationalists in Myanmar and the desires of the United States Christian Dominionists goals to illustrate and highlight the way that the twin powers of the state and religion serve as direct agents of social control by transmitting values of each institution through law, policy, and by punishing those who deviate.

Keywords

Citation

Sterken, R.E. (2019), "Religion and the State: The Politics of Social Control in Myanmar and the United States", Rabe-Hemp, C.E. and Lind, N.S. (Ed.) Political Authority, Social Control and Public Policy (Public Policy and Governance, Vol. 31), Emerald Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 109-122. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2053-769720190000031008

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2019, by Robert Edward Sterken Jr.