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A Critical Review of Economic Analyses of Religion

Author

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  • Vikas Kumar

    (Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research)

Abstract

Recent years have seen increasing interest in economic analyses of religion. We carry out a critical review of Economics of Religion (EoR) in this review essay. We find that on the one hand EoR has made a significant contribution to enhance our understanding of secular trappings of religion and to break the stranglehold of non-rational approach to religion. On the other it has failed systematically to address the core of religion, namely, belief in its purportedly supernatural basis. Furthermore the methodological foundations of EoR are far from settled. We identify the shortcomings of the literature and suggest remedial measures, wherever possible.

Suggested Citation

  • Vikas Kumar, 2008. "A Critical Review of Economic Analyses of Religion," Macroeconomics Working Papers 22368, East Asian Bureau of Economic Research.
  • Handle: RePEc:eab:macroe:22368
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    File URL: http://www.eaber.org/node/22368
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Charles G. Leathers & J. Patrick Raines, 2008. "Adam Smith on Religion and Market Structure: The Search for Consistency," History of Political Economy, Duke University Press, vol. 40(2), pages 345-363, Summer.
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    Cited by:

    1. Vikas Kumar, 2014. "A model of state secularism," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 48(4), pages 2313-2327, July.
    2. Vikas Kumar, 2012. "Cartels in the Kautiliya Arthasastra," Czech Economic Review, Charles University Prague, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Economic Studies, vol. 6(1), pages 59-79, March.
    3. Vikas Kumar, 2013. "A model of secularism in the state of nature," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 47(2), pages 1199-1212, February.
    4. Vikas Kumar, 2013. "A Bayesian model of religious conversion," Quality & Quantity: International Journal of Methodology, Springer, vol. 47(2), pages 1163-1171, February.
    5. Alpaslan Akay & Gökhan Karabulut & Peter Martinsson, 2013. "The effect of religiosity and religious festivals on positional concerns -- an experimental investigation of Ramadan," Applied Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(27), pages 3914-3921, September.
    6. Anja Klaubert, 2009. "Being religious - A Question of Incentives?," Working Paper Series in Economics 118, University of Lüneburg, Institute of Economics.
    7. Akay, Alpaslan & Karabulut, Gökhan & Martinsson, Peter, 2011. "The Effect of Religion on Cooperation and Altruistic Punishment: Experimental Evidence from Public Goods Experiments," IZA Discussion Papers 6179, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Church; Credence Goods; Economic Methodology; Inscrutable Markets; Religion;

    JEL classification:

    • Z12 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Religion

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