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  • 1.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    An opiate for the bourgeoisie?: Mahatma Gandhi, psychology of religion, and the politics of spirituality2019Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 2.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Bloody, Intense, and Durable: The Politics of 'Religious Conflict'2021In: Temenos, ISSN 0497-1817, E-ISSN 2342-7256, Vol. 57, no 1, p. 59-80Article, review/survey (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    A growing number of scholars argues that we are witnessing a resurgenceof religion in world politics, accompanied by an increasein religiously inspired conflict. Empirical studies demonstrate thatreligious conflicts are more violent, more intense, more durable, andmore difficult to resolve through negotiated settlements than theirsecular counterparts. In this paper, we argue that these conclusionsare unreliable, because they fail to provide convincing criteria forseparating religious conflicts from non-religious ones. Our mainconcern is with the categorization problem. What characteristics orfactors make a conflict party, conflict issue, or identity religious, andwhat characteristics or factors frame a conflict party, conflict issue,or identity as non-religious? A basic assumption behind much of thisresearch is the contested idea that religion is a universal phenomenonembodied in various forms such as Islam and Christianity. The majorityof scholars simply assume a sharp division between religion andthe secular without problematizing or justifying such a distinction. Inthis article, we argue that religious conflict is an ideologically chargedconcept, and that the study of the religion-conflict nexus reinforcesthe neoliberal status quo and current systems of power.

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  • 3.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Mahatma Gandhi, neoliberalism, and the bourgeois study of spirituality2020In: Research in the Social Scientific Study of Religion: A Diversity of Paradigms / [ed] Ralph W. Hood and Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor, Brill Academic Publishers, 2020, p. 43-62Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In psychological literature, the concept of spirituality is typically defined as something private, internal and experiential that includes meaning-making, sacred values, connectedness, and/or transcendence. Thus, spirituality is distinct from social, economic, and political spheres of human life. Most scholars who concern themselves with spirituality assume that it is a universal phenomenon that is essentially the same everywhere. But the isolation of spirituality as a sphere of life that is separated from other spheres is not a universal feature of human history. Mahatma Gandhi, who argued that spirituality is associated with political activism and the struggle for social and economic justice, illustrates this point. Spirituality is a modern concept with a specific history and what counts as spirituality and what does not depend on different configurations of power. In this paper, we explore why a category as amorphous and indeterminate as spirituality has maintained such a currency in the literature of the psychology of religion. We argue that the category of spirituality is a sociopolitical management technique for reinforcing political quietism, which is necessary for the maintenance of the neoliberal status quo.

  • 4.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Why do people kill in the name of religion?: Evolutionary psychology, political process theory and the causes of religious conflicts2017Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Eriksson, Johan
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Moderate and radical Muslims, but for whom and for what purpose?2022In: Lesser heard voices in studies of religion / [ed] Ralph W. Hood; Sariya Cheruvallil-Contractor, Leiden: Brill Academic Publishers, 2022, p. 78-100Chapter in book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Categorization is an innate human ability that helps us understand and perceive the world around us. In this article, we explore how this ability affects how and why people, groups, and states around the world categorize Muslims. Our focus is primarily on the categories of moderate and radical, and the problems associated with these two distinctions. We argue that what counts as radical as opposed to moderate is always changing, because it depends on what is considered moderate at a particular time and place and is therefore also dependent on existing power arrangements. We also argue that the categorization of radical and moderate is linked to liberal values and liberal politics, rather than to theological beliefs.

  • 6.
    Sonnenschein, Hannes
    et al.
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    Lindgren, Tomas
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of historical, philosophical and religious studies.
    The Shapeshifting Self: Narrative Pathways into Political Violence2020In: Religions, ISSN 2077-1444, E-ISSN 2077-1444, Vol. 11, no 9, article id 464Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In the wake of numerous terror attacks around the globe, academic and popular discourse on radicalization has witnessed exponential growth in publications that, sadly, have not resulted in a coherent or consensus definition of the concept, nor have they determined its causality and effects. In this article, we use the term three-pronged process of radicalization by narrative to denote an ongoing process of meaning-making, adaptation, and coping, and argue this process to be inherently linked with the social, cultural, and ideological construction and reconstruction of the identity arch-story of individual lives. We suggest that, in some cases, the ceaseless process of social interaction of identity narratives eventuates in what we define as the Shapeshifting Self, by coherently fusing stories of personal loss, rupture, or trauma together with the counterparts of movements and national stories of sociopolitical engagement. At the endpoint of the process, violent engagement is perceived by the self as legitimate and even necessary for the psychological well-being of the perpetrator. By applying this approach to the Jewish-Israeli context, we aim to illustrate the socioculturally situated contingencies associated with the process of radicalization by narrative.

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    fulltext
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