The resurgence of religion, in particular that form of religious revivalism popularly referred to as “religious fundamentalism,” has had deep roots and a profound impact on global politics and society since the late twentieth century. The resurgence has occurred in all the world’s major religions and across the world, from Africa, North America and Latin America to the Middle East and Asia. The conventional wisdom in modernisation and development studies had been that modernisation required the secularisation of politics and society. As one prominent expert put it, the choice in the Muslim world was between Mecca or mechanisation!
The reassertion of religion in politics and society signaled a process of de-secularisation which has seen religion as a major factor and challenge in domestic and international politics and society in many parts of the world. This lecture will look at the role and future of religion in global politics and in combating violent extremism and terrorism in the 21st century. Distinguished Public Lecture by Bridge Founder and Director Dr. John L. Esposito.