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Generating Generosity in Catholicism and Islam
Beliefs, Institutions, and Public Goods Provision

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Part of Cambridge Studies in Economics, Choice, and Society

  • Date Published: May 2018
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781107135512

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About the Authors
  • Using an innovative methodological approach combining field experiments, case studies, and statistical analyzes, this book explores how the religious beliefs and institutions of Catholics and Muslims prompt them to be generous with their time and resources. Drawing upon research involving more than 1,000 Catholics and Muslims in France, Ireland, Italy, and Turkey, the authors examine Catholicism and Islam in majority and minority contexts, discerning the specific factors that lead adherents to help others and contribute to social welfare projects. Based on theories from political science, economics, religious studies and social psychology, this approach uncovers the causal connections between religious community dynamics, religious beliefs and institutions, and socio-political contexts in promoting or hindering the generosity of Muslims and Catholics. The study also provides insight into what different religious beliefs mean to Muslims and Catholics, and how they understand those concepts.

    • Studies how two mainstream religions with a weak capacity to materially reward or punish members for contributing (or not) to the group still can elicit generous helping behavior, appealing to readers interested in public choice economics and rational choice theory
    • Studies the impact of the size of the welfare state on generosity and public goods provision
    • Will address debates in politics, public policy, and in the social sciences about the effect of government-based social welfare on private charity
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    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘The authors provide a carefully-crafted study of Muslims and Catholics and what determines their decisions to support charitable organizations. They employ cutting edge methodology that should be of interest to everyone studying the topic of religion. Their finding that both theology and institutions shape generosity moves us beyond simple dichotomies of religious behavior and reveals the complex nature of religiously-motivated action.' Anthony Gill, author of The Political Origins of Religious Liberty

    ‘How do religious beliefs and institutions come together to encourage prosocial behaviors, like charitable giving? Generating Generosity in Catholicism and Islam synthesizes a wide range of scholarly work to provide a compelling and coherent answer to the question of how religion encourages adherents help others, particularly those who are poorly positioned to reciprocate in the future.' Lisa Blaydes, Director, Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies, Stanford University, California

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    Product details

    • Date Published: May 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781107135512
    • length: 310 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 156 x 22 mm
    • weight: 0.56kg
    • contains: 19 b/w illus. 14 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Introduction: what we know and don't know about religious-based generosity
    2. The charitable consequences of institutions and rituals in Catholicism and Islam
    3. Generosity, public goods provision and religious beliefs in Catholicism and Islam: an experiment
    4. The meaning of religion to Catholics and Muslims
    5. Religious beliefs, prosociality and connections to others
    6. Belief, belonging, and giving in Catholic parishes and Muslim associations
    7. Religious minorities and collective goods provision
    8. Does the welfare state undermine the generosity of Catholics and Muslims?
    9. Conclusion.

  • Resources for

    Generating Generosity in Catholicism and Islam

    Carolyn M. Warner, Ramazan Kılınç, Christopher W. Hale, Adam B. Cohen

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  • Authors

    Carolyn M. Warner, Arizona State University
    Carolyn M. Warner is Professor of Political Science in the School of Politics and Global Studies at Arizona State University. She is the author of Confessions of an Interest Group: The Catholic Church and Political Parties in Europe (2000), and articles in Perspectives on Politics and Psychological Science, among others.

    Ramazan Kılınç, University of Nebraska, Omaha
    Ramazan Kilinç is Associate Professor of Political Science and Co-Director of the Islamic Studies Program at the University of Nebraska, Omaha. He has published articles in Comparative Politics, Political Science Quarterly, Politics and Religion, and Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, among other journals.

    Christopher W. Hale, University of Alabama
    Christopher W. Hale is Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Alabama. He has published in outlets such as the American Journal of Political Science and Comparative Politics.

    Adam B. Cohen, Arizona State University
    Adam B. Cohen is Associate Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University, and is associate editor of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. He is the author of numerous articles, book chapters, and essays, including editor of the book Culture Reexamined (2013).

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