Our next speaker is Metin Coşgel, who will talk about the "deep roots" of civil conflict.
There are many reasons to think that religious differences are one source of civil conflict today. (Civil conflict means fighting within the borders of a single state rather than wars between different states.) It is easy to assume that it is today's differences and grievances that drive civil conflict. But there is a developing field of economic history that looks for the "deep roots" of present-day phenomena -- the causes that go way back in the past. Your assignment is to evaluate -- to compare and contrast -- proximate-cause explanations (that is, causes based on things that are happening today) with "deep roots" causes (causes based on things that happened in the past and may actually no longer be happening to day). What can we say about whether civil conflict is being caused by today's religious differences or by historic events and grievances?
Here are some readings to get you started.
- José G. Montalvo and Marta Reynal-Querol, "Religion and Conflict: A Quantitative Approach," in
- Spolaore, Enrico, and Romain Wacziarg, “How Deep Are the Roots of Economic Development?” Journal of Economic Literature 51(2): 325–369 (2013).