The Multifaith Movement: Global Risks and Cosmopolitan Solutions

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May 16th, 2013 7:00 PM
Anna Halafoff discusses her newly published research on the role of multifaith work in countering terrorism

We are delighted to welcome Dr Anna Halafoff back to St Ethelburga's to report on the important results of her recently published research, published as

  • First in-depth sociological study investigating the multifaith movement, contributing new evidence to challenge the secularisation theory
  • First book clearly explaining the role that multifaith initiatives play in countering terrorism
  • New theoretical Netpeace framework, providing a missing narrative within the sociology of religion literature

Anna Halafoff pictureThis book documents the ultramodern rise of the multifaith movement, as mulitfaith initiatives have been increasingly deployed as cosmopolitan solutions to counter global risks such as terrorism and climate change at the turn of the 21st century. These projects aim to enhance common security, particularly in Western societies following the events of September 11, 2001 and the July 2005 London bombings, where multifaith engagement has been promoted as a strategy to counter violent extremism.

The author draws on interviews with 56 leading figures in the field of multifaith relations, including Paul Knitter, Eboo Patel, Marcus Braybrooke, Katherine Marshall, John Voll and Krista Tippett.

Identifying the principle aims of the multifaith movement, the analysis explores the benefits—and challenges—of multifaith engagement, as well as the effectiveness of multifaith initiatives in countering the process of radicalization. Building on notions of cosmopolitanism, the work proposes a new theoretical framework termed ‘Netpeace’, which recognizes the interconnectedness of global problems and their solutions. In doing so, it acknowledges the capacity of multi-actor peacebuilding networks, including religious and state actors, to address the pressing dilemmas of our times. The primary intention of the book is to assist in the formation of new models of activism and governance, founded on a ‘politics of understanding’ modeled by the multifaith movement.

Dr. Anna Halafoff is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Citizenship and Globalisation, Deakin University. Previously, Anna was a lecturer at the School of Political and Social Inquiry, and a researcher for the UNESCO Chair in Interreligious and Intercultural Relations – Asia Pacific, at Monash University (2005-2012).

May 16th, 2013 7:00 PM
St Ethelburga's Centre
78 Bishopsgate
London, EC2N 4AG
United Kingdom

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