The State, Toleration, and Religious Freedom

Advances in the Economics of Religion, Edited by Iyer, Rubin and Carvalho. Palgrave, 2018

GMU Working Paper in Economics No. 18-18

29 Pages Posted: 18 Jun 2018 Last revised: 1 Jul 2018

See all articles by Noel D. Johnson

Noel D. Johnson

George Mason University - Department of Economics; George Mason University - Mercatus Center

Mark Koyama

George Mason University - Department of Economics; George Mason University - Mercatus Center

Date Written: May 30, 2018

Abstract

This paper offers a novel account of the rise of religious freedom. Religious and political power have been bound together since pre-history. As a consequence, there was an absence of religious freedom throughout most of history. Even when religious dissidents were not being persecuted for their beliefs, religious practice was not free. We investigate the motivations that led some states to persecute individuals for their religious beliefs and other states to abstain from persecution. We argue that the rise of modern states — states capable of enforcing general rules and the rule of law — made possible religious peace and the eventual rise of religious and other liberal freedoms.

Keywords: Religion, State Capacity, Rule of Law, Toleration

JEL Classification: N43, Z1, Z12, Z13, K4

Suggested Citation

Johnson, Noel D. and Koyama, Mark, The State, Toleration, and Religious Freedom (May 30, 2018). Advances in the Economics of Religion, Edited by Iyer, Rubin and Carvalho. Palgrave, 2018; GMU Working Paper in Economics No. 18-18. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3187817 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3187817

Noel D. Johnson

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

George Mason University - Mercatus Center

3434 Washington Blvd., 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

Mark Koyama (Contact Author)

George Mason University - Department of Economics ( email )

4400 University Drive
Fairfax, VA 22030
United States

HOME PAGE: http://mason.gmu.edu/~mkoyama2/About.html

George Mason University - Mercatus Center ( email )

3434 Washington Blvd., 4th Floor
Arlington, VA 22201
United States

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
101
rank
254,222
Abstract Views
501
PlumX Metrics