The impact of religious freedom researchVol. 12 No. 1/2 (2019)
We are pleased that IJRF is continuing to catch up on its backlog. While this volume comes under the label of 2019, the articles were written in 2020 and 2021. The issue is being published at the end of 2021.
Our guest editors for this special issue are Dr Dennis P. Petri and Prof Dr Govert J. Buijs. Dr Petri has contributed articles to several previous issues of the IJRF. A political scientist, international consultant and researcher, Petri founded and serves as scholar-at-large of the Observatory of Religious Freedom in Latin America (OLIRE). Dr Buijs is professor of political philosophy at the Faculty of Humanities, Department of Philosophy of the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam and holds the Kuyper Chair for ‘Political philosophy and religion’ as well as the Goldschmeding Chair ‘Economy in relation to civil society’.
Dr Petri and Dr Buijs held a two-part virtual expert seminar on 18 and 25 May 2020 on The Impact of Religious Freedom Research. The seminar included 13 excellent papers on a wide variety of subjects related to religious freedom research, which form the foundation of this issue. We appreciate Dr Petri and Dr Buijs’s work in editing this issue of IJRF.
Yours for religious freedom,
Prof Dr Janet Epp Buckingham, executive editor
From marginalization to martyrdomVol. 11 No. 1/2 (2018)
This issue covers a wide variety of topics from a truly global array of authors. Several authors show that Christians face marginalization, particularly in the West, for their faith. Christians can even be marginalized within their religious communities. But we are also aware that Christians face death for their faith and we honour those who have been martyred for their faith.
Responding to PersecutionVol. 10 No. 1/2 (2017)
This issue of IJRF deals with responses by those who are persecuted, as well as responses by those advocating on behalf of the persecuted.
Gender and Religious FreedomVol. 9 No. 1/2 (2016)
Religious persecution is frequently gender-specific, impacting men and women dif-ferently. Grassroots research in countries such as Egypt and Pakistan in 2012 and 2013 showed that many women were experiencing double vulnerability not only due to their faith, but also as women. As a result, representatives of international charities who aid Christians facing persecution decided to form a steering group, bringing together non-governmental agencies, Christian ministries, and church leaders who were already seeking to address these issues. This issue presents some of the papers originally delivered in the scholarly tracks of several conferences, as well as other papers related to the issue of gender and persecution. Some of the papers are more recent than the 2016 date of this issue, which is being published in 2020 because the journal was dormant for several years.
Christian minorities & religious freedomVol. 8 No. 1/2 (2015)
This issue represents the geographical and interdisciplinary breadth that the jour-nal strives for, with articles ranging from law to theology and from Nigeria to North America. While there was no preconceived thematic focus, the uniting thread of most of the contributions is a focus on Christian minorities and religious freedom.
Religious Extremism & Religious ToleranceVol. 7 No. 1/2 (2014)
Religious extremism is considered as one of the major causes of contemporary reli-gious persecution, whereas religious tolerance is a foundation of religious freedom. This dual topic covers most of the articles in this issue and its terminology is inspired by the opinion piece of Thomas K. Johnson on “Religious extremism” and the report on the research project “Measuring religious tolerance ...” by Johannes van der Walt et al.
Researching Religious FreedomVol. 6 No. 1/2 (2013)
There are several platforms and networks used by researchers interested in the study of religious freedom. Some of the contributions in this issue emanate from the In-ternational Consultation on Religious Freedom Research, held in Istanbul on 16-18 March 2013. They have all undergone the usual peer review process for IJRF – includ-ing the opinion pieces. They only represent a fraction of the many papers presented at the consultation. A separate consultation compendium is still being contemplated.The articles fall in roughly three groups: the opinion pieces, research that focuses on various regions and countries and an equal contingent of research on diverse topics relating to religious freedom and persecution.
Measuring and Encountering PersecutionVol. 5 No. 2 (2012)
Religious persecution is a phenomenon experienced by many adherents of various religions worldwide. In some contexts it is not outright persecution, but believers face serious challenges to the free exercise of religion. A common theme that unites most articles of this issue of IJRF is the encountering of persecution. What precisely are the challenges that believers, and particularly Christians, face in various con-texts? How do they cope with it? How do they react? Which role do theological inter-pretations play? Another question connected to the documentation of persecution is how it can be measured, and whether trans-national comparisons are possible.
Rising Restrictions WorldwideVol. 5 No. 1 (2012)
Religious freedom has been thrust to the top of the political agenda in recent months. The violence in places like Nigeria has been on the front pages for some time, where sadly it continues (as Yakubu Joseph and Rainer Rothfuss describe in this issue in some detail). But in the industrial democracies – and now the United States in particular – religious freedom is becoming newsworthy as seldom be-fore. President Obama’s healthcare mandates have highlighted conflicts between religious freedom and personal behavior elsewhere in the developed world. We hope to explore this in a future issue, but it brings to a head trends that have been explored in this issue and other recent issues of IJRF.
Religion and Civil SocietyVol. 4 No. 2 (2011)
“Civil society” is a concept that dates back to the late eighteenth century, as Silvio Ferrari points out in these pages, and it entered the vocabulary of political philoso-phy largely through Hegel and Marx. But it became newly fashionable following the collapse of communism in Central and Eastern Europe. It emphasizes the impor-tance to freedom of autonomous social groups and institutions below the state and not controlled by it. More recently, it has become controversial and the original meaning diluted by being adopted as the mantle for groups that are sometimes funded and supported by governments and international organizations. This is a significant potential pitfall when confronting problems of church and state. We approach civil society and the relations of church and state from several directions in this issue of the International Journal for Religious Freedom.
Advocacy and LawVol. 4 No. 1 (2011)
This issue of IJRF focuses on “advocacy and law”, namely issues related to reli-gious freedom advocacy and legal matters surrounding religious freedom. Here is a stimulating general definition which applies well to social justice advocacy, includ-ing religious freedom advocacy on behalf of those persecuted for the sake of their religion and/or because of the religious motives of the persecutors: “Advocacy is speaking, acting, writing, with minimal conflict of interest on behalf of the sincerely perceived interests of a disadvantaged person or group to promote, protect and defend their welfare and justice by being on their side and no-one else’s; being primarily concerned with their fundamental needs; remaining loyal and accountable to them in a way which is emphatic and vigorous and which is, or is likely to be, costly to the advocate or advocacy group.” (Action for Advocacy Development, based on Wolf Wolfensberger).
Volume 3, Issue 2Vol. 3 No. 2 (2010)
This issue of our journal strongly reflects the interdisciplinarynature of the IJRF, presenting original research in Islamic Studies,Geography, Law and Ethics, Government Science, and Theology.
Volume 3, Issue 1Vol. 3 No. 1 (2010)
There are a number of global Christian mission conferences happeningin 2010. In addition, the discussion on how the propagation of one’sworld view and the issues of religious freedom, persecution and evenmartyrdom are related, has increased. Therefore we have chosen tofocus in this issue of the International Journal for Religious Freedomon “mission and persecution.”
Volume 2, Issue 2Vol. 2 No. 2 (2009)
This issue of the International Journal for Religious Freedom wasborn in the tension between a lot of excitement and deep pain. That istrue both on a global as well as on a personal level. The editors, staff, associates of the International Institute for Religious Freedom, and theauthors of this IJRF issue have had many opportunities to contributeto the upholding of religious freedom, some of which are reflected inthis journal. However, researching and documenting the abuse ofhuman beings and the restriction or denial of their religious freedom,do not pass lightly. Some of us have seen moments of breakthroughand triumph as well as various degrees of personal suffering.
Volume 2, Issue 1Vol. 2 No. 1 (2009)
It gives the editors of the International Journal for Religious Freedom (IJRF) great pleasure to present our readers with the second issue of thisinterdisciplinary and scholarly publication. We hope that you will find thearticles informative, thought-provoking, and of a high standard, and that thejournal will equally serve religious freedom. For that purpose we have addedsome new rubrics.
Volume 1Vol. 1 No. 1 (2008)
Introducing the International Journal for Religious Freedom: The International Journal for Religious Freedom (IJRF) is dedicated tothe scholarly discourse on the issue of religious freedom in general andthe persecution of Christians in particular. It is an interdisciplinary,international, peer reviewed, scholarly journal, serving the practicalinterests of religious freedom and contains research articles,documentation, book reviews and academic news on the issue.