Checkpoint, Temple, Church and Mosque: A Collaborative Ethnography of War and Peace

Jonathan Spencer, Jonathan Goodhand, Shahul Hasbullah, Bart Klem, Benedikt Korf, Kalinga Tudor Silva

Research output: Book/ReportBook

Abstract / Description of output

Is religion best seen as only a cause of war, or is it a source of comfort for those caught up in conflict? In Checkpoint, Temple, Church and Mosque six senior figures in Anthropology, Sociology, Geography and Development Studies set out to answer this question.

Based on fieldwork conducted in Sri Lanka's most religiously diverse and politically troubled region during the country's civil war (1983-2009), it provides a series of new and provocative arguments about the promise of a religiously based civil society, and the strengths and weaknesses of religious organisations and religious leaders in conflict mediation.

The authors argue that for people trapped in long and violent conflicts, religion ultimately plays a contradictory role, and that its institutions are themselves profoundly affected by war - producing a complex picture in which Catholic priests engage with Buddhist monks and new Muslim leaders, and where Hindu temples and Pentecostal churches offer the promise of healing.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherPluto Press
Number of pages224
ISBN (Electronic)9781783712151
ISBN (Print)9780745331218, 9780745331225
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2014

Publication series

NameAnthropology, Culture and Society
PublisherPluto Press


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