Issue

Religion & Power

Religious faith is central to the lives of billions, a driving force in everything from family structure to relationships within and among the world’s nation states. It is also the venue, and often the source, of conflict.

Religion and Power presents Pulitzer Center reporting on these themes from throughout the world—from the explosive growth of megachurches in Africa and Latin America to intra-Islam schisms of the Middle East, to the self-immolation of Tibetan Buddhist monks and Buddhist soldiers running roughshod over the rights of Burmese Muslims, to the struggles of faith groups everywhere to come to terms with human sexuality.

In some parts of the world, notably China, governments that long suppressed religious expression are now invoking those traditions as part of the solution to environmental and other challenges. Elsewhere, from majority-Catholic Philippines to Muslim Indonesia, religious doctrine on issues like reproductive rights is in uneasy dialogue with the forces of modernization and globalization.

In Religion and Power, we aim for reporting that tackles these tough, core issues—but without the easy stereotypes and caricature that too often make journalism a tool for demagogy. In the Pulitzer Center reporting presented here we seek instead to be a force for understanding.

The Pulitzer Center’s reporting on religion and public policy issues is made possible through the support of the Henry Luce Foundation, the Kendeda Fund, and other Pulitzer Center donors.

 

Religion & Power

India: The State of States

In its annual 'State of the States' survey, India Today magazine – the South Asian equivalent to Time, right down to its red window cover – put Bihar at the bottom among large states in eight categories ranging from economic output to electricity consumption. This hardly comes as a surprise as Bihar has earned an 'F' each year since rankings were first published five years ago.

Dangerous Allies

New alliances with Sunni militias have reduced attacks on American troops in Anbar and elsewhere in Iraq, but will this new strategy lead to lasting stability, or is it feeding a sectarian civil war and exacerbating a growing refugee crisis?

Refugees Flee Iraq but Find Long Wait

Salam and Hanan's 6-month-old son, Hamoudi, will probably not grow up in Baghdad. He will have lots of company.

Salam, Hanan and Hamoudi are among about 2 million Iraqi war refugees living in Syria and Jordan. They left Baghdad in June after their house was raided by militiamen because Salam worked as an accountant for the Iraqi government. He took a leave from his job, but it seems unlikely he will return. He was also threatened by members of a political party after filing a report that implicated party members who work in Iraqi government of embezzlement and corruption.

Rick Rowley and David Enders on Pacifica Radio

Rick Rowley and David Enders were interviewed on Pacifica Radio's KPFA 94.1 "Living Room" program on September 13 and Rick was interviewed on KPFT Radio's "Arab Voices" on September 12.

On "Living Room," host Kris Welch interviews David Enders and Rick about the testimony given September 10, 2007 before a joint session of the Armed Services and Foreign Affairs committees by Army General David Petraeus, the commander of U.S. forces in occupied Iraq.