Religion and The Economy

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by BlackWizzard17, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    So i am currently writing a research paper for my AP Human Geography class and upon researching, making a statement upon whether or not Religion has an affect on a countries economic growth.
    Now the main point for my paper is my thesis statement so I want each of my paragraphs to pinpoint back to my thesis supporting it well enough which I would like to say it can be done easily but I have to also cite my work and i don't want to use such a random site. If anyone could help a fellow temper that would be great, and if anyone wants to see my Intro paragraph or my thesis statement i would be more than gladly to share it with you.
    Thesis:
    "I believe that a country and its economy is determined by its work ethics performed by the people in life as a whole through hard work and achievement and not solely on the religion"

    EDIT:The question(s) I'm responding to.
    "Is there a relationship between religion and economic development? What is that relationship? Does a country’s religion or religiosity impact that country’s economic development?"
    Any information or advice would be great and thanks in advance?:lol:
     
  2. emigre

    emigre Oh Jeremy Corbyn

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    what is your thesis statement? Without that it's hard to provide ideas.
     
  3. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    Included it in the post.
     
  4. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Edit. Your edit came after my post, however it looks like mine might still apply at some level so I will leave it. I would also contemplate what goes when a wise, if unpleasant, ruler conflates a caste system/Feudal system with religion (you are a serf because a god wants you to be and such like) but I will leave that for now.
    ----
    County or country? I assume the latter but the former could be interesting.

    What are you looking into specifically? I do not think anybody would argue that religion did not have an economic impact upon countries (the church tithe was if not an actual law then for all intents and purposes it was still one at various points). The specifics would be where it is at though. You might also want to consider it by religion -- Christianity does not say that much (though there were some interesting things with decimalisation/Arabic numbers, something about being "too easy") but Islam includes extensive guidelines on economics, one of the more notable being a prohibition on interest ( http://www.theguardian.com/money/2013/oct/29/islamic-finance-sharia-compliant-money-interest ). Cutting the other way might also be Islam and existing religions; the various Islamic empires were often happy enough for people to continue to worship their existing gods, however they would have to pay a tax for it (known as jizyah)... turns out in many cases many people are happy enough to convert rather than pay and there were several notable things along the way as well.

    Equally religious orders have been seen to do something close to public works at times, I am trying to find a proper writeup but there was one show I saw once where some monks offered to save some aristocrat type's "Immortal soul" and were given some marshland, however they eventually got enough lay brothers that they made it a workable piece of land and changed the trade economy in the area. This was around the time of various plagues so there is that.

    Trade restrictions were also a thing, though how much power religion wielded is up for debate. Venice is a good example here --

    The crusades would also be an interesting one (variously religiously motivated and had a radical economic impact upon a lot of things).

    On the flip side Japan did have some stuff with European style guns, gun parts and supplies for a while (it took a while longer for some countries to arrive and Portugal tied the supply quite heavily to acceptance of the religion, and or whatever the Jesuits did).

    If you want a more US centric concept then various religious groups have some odd things -- everything from the Shaker woodwork stuff to people actually choosing to live in Utah if they were doing the whole Mormon bit.

    Going a bit more ponderous what about religion introducing, or in some cases creating*, the written word in places? Written communication/recording tends to be rather linked to economic prosperity.

    *Saint Cyril and the Cyrillic alphabet being an example, some of the stuff that happened in Scandinavia/Nordic countries.

    Another might be Mansa Musa and his hajj -- the amount of gold he sprayed around did not do wonders for the gold price as he passed through.

    Anyway my food is done so I will leave it there. I doubt you will find a fully developed theory you can use for this but there are plenty of examples.
     
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  5. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    Sorry, my keyboard is really dusty so I might have made that mistake and I also mean country not county.
    Thanks for the information anyways, as long as I am able to get liable information to help support my paper than I am very grateful.
     
  6. RevPokemon

    RevPokemon GBATemp's 3rd Favorite Transgirl

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    Well it looks OK but as someone who is hopefully going into theology and history studies in college I'd add this
    In some countries the economy is limited by religious beliefs. For example the prohibition was mainly supported by fundamentalists and canceled the legal sale of alcohol but led to bootleggers and crime (read about Baptists and bootleggers). Personally speaking I feel religion often can stop the cause of sales of certain items or services (alcohol, drugs,porn or other stuff the main religion of the people is against) which affects the economy
     
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  7. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    I like that, I never thought about the restrictions of a religion that might cause an economy to be affected in a way.
     
  8. RevPokemon

    RevPokemon GBATemp's 3rd Favorite Transgirl

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    Yeah just look at all the stuff your not allowed to sale in the middle east. Booze,pork, many other types of meat, and cinema are all restricted in sales in the middle east which is a major part of the world.
     
  9. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    I could include that but I want to find or pick certain countries in general (e.g. U.S, China, Ghana, etc) except I want to find countries that have a good economy and is very religious while also finding a bad economic country that is very religious do to its restrictions.
     
  10. RevPokemon

    RevPokemon GBATemp's 3rd Favorite Transgirl

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    Bad economic with freedom of religion would be Cuba as it is largely secular and Christians are getting more tolerance

    Country with very religious and good economy would be Saudi or Sweden(has a state church)

    Either way I hope I helped
     
  11. BlackWizzard17
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    BlackWizzard17 Don't worry Captin we'll buff out those scratches.

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    Thanks allot, I will research more on those countries. Any information would help and i really appreciate it.
     
  12. emigre

    emigre Oh Jeremy Corbyn

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    some brief notes.


    My response to the question would firstly begin with establishing the weak link between religion belief towards economic theories PErsonally I would focus on the 20th century as economic principles had become much more defined and established after work in the 19th century by guys like John Stuart Mill. No religion sets out clear monetary policy on public expenditure. Neoliberalism is the hegemonic economic ideology society has been adopted from those proclaiming themselves as religious and non religious. For example the New Right has an emphasis on religion, most nominally Christianity, and had a conservative emphasis on social matters whilst pushing neoliberal reforms such as deregulation and privatisation. For example the Thatcher government pushed neolibal reforms yet maintained introduced section 28. On the other hand, for the lack of a better term, classic Liberals would believe neoliberal economics and minimal interference in societal matters such as sex etc.

    In terms of overall idealogical influence, religion may inspire values within political parties i.e. Keir Hardie was a principle figure in the formation of the British LAbour party and he was a Christian Socialist however the LAbour party has never been a "Christian" or "religious" political organisation. It should be acknowledged religious belief can influence individual decision making of a representative, most nominally in social affairs, a Christian representative may vote against Gay marriage as it goes against his Christian beleifs of how marriage is defined.

    I'd also mention something abuot Liberation theology in LAtin America and how it coincided and conflicted with military juntas and neoliberalism such as the Chicago boys. You could probably look into the Pink tide and look if there's any link between nations with something like church aattendanceto political affiliation. Do Christians vote for left leaning candidates as evidenced in South America since 2000.

    FAcets I would look into would be natural resources such as oil. Qater are rich as fuck because of it and as oil is so valuable any limitations on booze is negligent.
    State and welfare iinfrastructure
    Separation between religion and the state (or lack of)
    Population, the smaller the nation the less need for public services.
    Poverty and literacy.
    history of political turmoil
     
  13. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

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    Religion can be pretty brutal but the only things more brutal are economics and nature/laws of physics, and the former only just slightly. Unless you are going to try to argue a "religion stopped the pursuit of science and with it damaged the economy" type angle, which might be doable but would by no means be an easy one to argue for without planning, you are going to find that those with odd ideas tend not to thrive/get left to rule. Or if you prefer there are phrases along the lines of "a country is only [some small number of] meals from revolution", something which couples rather nicely with "an army marches on its stomach".

    You might find the odd town/region to have a decent tourist trade because of things (Mecca being the obvious one but Vatican city does not do badly either and there are places all over the world that do well), however at country level (or possibly state level depending upon how you want to play it) then you will have trouble. For bad you might look to some of the countries of south east Asia, some countries have seen a few leaders have some odd characters as "religious/spiritual advisors" but it probably then swings back around to the first paragraph -- if you have a tenuous grip on reality then you probably also have a tenuous grip upon the lands outside your immediate vicinity which will probably be doing business, in both senses of the word, as usual with maybe a bit of lip service paid to your edicts.

    On the flip side a lot of nastiness in various parts of Africa (more than one country) has been seen to have a few religious nutjobs playing fairly pivotal roles -- a lot of anti gay sentiment, various ideas of condom usage and opposition of genetically modified ingredients has been traced back to various religious groups. The extent of such things is debatable as well; whipping people up into a mob for fear of the other is a fairly effective tactic (gays, communists, Satanists, witches/pagans, immigrants...) so it could be seen as something of a victim of convenience.

    Edit. Mind you some of the economic warfare (others mentioned Latin America and that would see me want to bring up things like the Banana wars), post war fiddlings (the middle east was seldom all that stable but the "lines on a map" approach taken post world war 2 probably did not do wonders) and things like the Iranian revolution back in 1979, all wound together with the nature of modern warfare (a group of angry peasants can do well enough in 1500 but today they tend to get flattened by a drone) could get you somewhere.