Does armed conflict increase individuals’ religiosity as a means for coping with the adverse psychological effects of wars?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study examines how armed conflict affects individuals' religious behaviors (e.g., praying) and beliefs. The direction of the effect is theoretically not clear: war exposure may strengthen individuals' religiosity. Alternatively, after war exposure, individuals may stop following religion, and decrease their faith in God. To assess the direction of this effect, this study examines individuals' religiosity before and after a war between Israel and a Lebanese terror organization in 2006. Using both longitudinal and cross-section datasets, I find that being exposed to war or residing in war-affected regions increases individuals' religious behaviors and beliefs. These results are more pronounced among lower-educated individuals and among those who were not religious prior to the violence. Exploring possible mechanisms, I show that individuals become more religious as a means for coping with the adverse psychological effects of the war. Placebo tests using the pre-war period and individuals’ views unrelated to war exposure strengthen my main findings.

Original languageEnglish
Article number114769
JournalSocial Science and Medicine
Volume296
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This paper uses data from SHARE Waves 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 (DOIs: 10.6103/SHARE.w1.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w2.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w3.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w4.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w5.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w6.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w7.711, 10.6103/SHARE.w8.100, 10.6103/SHARE.w8ca.100), see Börsch-Supan et al. (2013) for methodological details. (1) The SHARE data collection has been funded by the European Commission , DG RTD through FP5 ( QLK6-CT-2001-00360 ), FP6 ( SHARE-I3: RII-CT-2006-062193 , COMPARE: CIT5-CT-2005-028857 , SHARELIFE: CIT4-CT-2006-028812 ), FP7 (SHARE-PREP: GA N°211909 , SHARE-LEAP: GA N°227822 , SHARE M4: GA N°261982 , DASISH: GA N°283646 ) and Horizon 2020 (SHARE-DEV3: GA N°676536 , SHARE-COHESION: GA N°870628 , SERISS: GA N°654221 , SSHOC: GA N°823782 ) and by DG Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion through VS 2015/0195 , VS 2016/0135 , VS 2018/0285 , VS 2019/0332 , and VS 2020/0313 . Additional funding from the German Ministry of Education and Research , the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science, the U.S. National Institute on Aging ( U01_AG09740-13S2 , P01_AG005842 , P01_AG08291 , P30_AG12815 , R21_AG025169 , Y1-AG-4553-01 , IAG_BSR06-11 , OGHA_04–064 , HHSN271201300071C , RAG052527A ) and from various national funding sources is gratefully acknowledged (see www.share-project.org). The project development and data collection in Israel was supported by National Institutes of Health of the United States ( NIH ), National Insurance Institute of Israel , German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development ( GIF ), European Commission through the 7th framework program , Ministry of Science and Technology , and Ministry of Senior Citizens . The data was collected by the Israeli Gerontological Data Center at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Wave 3 data collection in Israel was funded by the NIH ( R01-AG031729 ) and the Ministry for Senior Citizens . The SHARE-Israel Project is administered by the Israel Gerontological Data Center at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel. The data were collected by the The B. I. and Lucille Cohen Institute for Public Opinion Research.

Funding Information:
I would like to thank Arthur Schneiderman for his valuable comments and suggestions. This paper uses data from SHARE Waves 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 (DOIs: 10.6103/SHARE.w1.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w2.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w3.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w4.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w5.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w6.710, 10.6103/SHARE.w7.711, 10.6103/SHARE.w8.100, 10.6103/SHARE.w8ca.100), see B?rsch-Supan et al. (2013) for methodological details.(1) The SHARE data collection has been funded by the European Commission, DG RTD through FP5 (QLK6-CT-2001-00360), FP6 (SHARE-I3: RII-CT-2006-062193, COMPARE: CIT5-CT-2005-028857, SHARELIFE: CIT4-CT-2006-028812), FP7 (SHARE-PREP: GA N?211909, SHARE-LEAP: GA N?227822, SHARE M4: GA N?261982, DASISH: GA N?283646) and Horizon 2020 (SHARE-DEV3: GA N?676536, SHARE-COHESION: GA N?870628, SERISS: GA N?654221, SSHOC: GA N?823782) and by DG Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion through VS 2015/0195, VS 2016/0135, VS 2018/0285, VS 2019/0332, and VS 2020/0313. Additional funding from the German Ministry of Education and Research, the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science, the U.S. National Institute on Aging (U01_AG09740-13S2, P01_AG005842,P01_AG08291, P30_AG12815, R21_AG025169, Y1-AG-4553-01, IAG_BSR06-11, OGHA_04?064, HHSN271201300071C, RAG052527A) and from various national funding sources is gratefully acknowledged (see www.share-project.org). The project development and data collection in Israel was supported by National Institutes of Health of the United States (NIH), National Insurance Institute of Israel, German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development (GIF), European Commission through the 7th framework program, Ministry of Science and Technology, and Ministry of Senior Citizens. The data was collected by the Israeli Gerontological Data Center at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Wave 3 data collection in Israel was funded by the NIH (R01-AG031729) and the Ministry for Senior Citizens. The SHARE-Israel Project is administered by the Israel Gerontological Data Center at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel. The data were collected by the The B. I. and Lucille Cohen Institute for Public Opinion Research. This paper also uses data from the International Social Survey Programme (ISSP). For more information please visit: http://www.issp.org/data-download/by-topic/

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd

Keywords

  • Armed conflict
  • Difference-in-differences estimation
  • Religiosity
  • War affected region

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • History and Philosophy of Science

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Does armed conflict increase individuals’ religiosity as a means for coping with the adverse psychological effects of wars?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this