Religion and Politics: Exploring the Underbelly of Populism

Populism has seen an unprecedented rise in recent decades. In many countries, populist movements have become an inherent part of the political system. What is striking is that strong religious views are often at the center of populist thinking. Is populism, then, the source of politics in religion, or does political theology beat at the heart of populism?

In this episode, Dr. Ulrich Schmiedel, Lecturer in Theology, Politics and Ethics at the University of Edinburgh, and Dr. Joshua Ralston, Reader in Christian-Muslim Relations at the School of Divinity, University of Edinburgh, help listeners find answers to this question with respect to Europe and America through a discussion of their book The Spirit of Populism: Political Theologies in Polarized Times.

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