International Politics Reviews

, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp 11–26 | Cite as

Religion and American foreign policy in the context of the postsecular turn in world politics and the social sciences

  • Gregorio Bettiza
Review Article


Despite longstanding research on religion and American politics, there has been little sustained attention to the relationship between religion and American foreign policy. This state of affairs is changing and markedly so. The past few years have witnessed an ever-growing stream of books across disciplines and perspectives seeking to understand and explain why, when and how religious individuals, organizations, ideas, identities and practices matter (or ought to matter) to America’s international conduct across time and issues. Why this sudden change? This review article contextualizes and relates this literature to the wider postsecular turn in the social world and the social sciences. It argues that research on religion and American policy has much to gain from a more consistent dialogue and engagement with the broader postsecular literature in international relations, and vice versa. The article concludes by highlighting seven promising avenues for further theoretical reflection and empirical research.


US foreign policy religion postsecularism 


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Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Ltd 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregorio Bettiza
    • 1
  1. 1.European University InstituteItaly

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