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Comparative Studies in Religion and Society #11: Bridge Betrayed: Religion and Genocide in Bosnia

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Comparative Studies in Religion and Society #11: Bridge Betrayed: Religion and Genocide in Bosnia Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

The recent atrocities in Bosnia-Herzegovina have stunned people throughout the world. With Holocaust memories still painfully vivid, a question haunts us: how is this savagery possible? Michael A. Sells answers by demonstrating that the Bosnian conflict is not simply a civil war or a feud of age-old adversaries. It is, he says, a systematic campaign of genocide and a Christian holy war spurred by religious mythologies.

This passionate yet reasoned book examines how religious stereotyping—in popular and official discourse—has fueled Serbian and Croatian ethnic hatreds. Sells, who is himself Serbian American, traces the cultural logic of genocide to the manipulation by Serb nationalists of the symbolism of Christ's death, in which Muslims are "Christ-killers" and Judases who must be mercilessly destroyed. He shows how "Christoslavic" religious nationalism became a central part of Croat and Serbian politics, pointing out that intellectuals and clergy were key instruments in assimilating extreme religious and political ideas.

Sells also elucidates the ways that Western policy makers have rewarded the perpetrators of the genocide and punished the victims. He concludes with a discussion of how the multireligious nature of Bosnian society has been a bridge between Christendom and Islam, symbolized by the now-destroyed bridge at Mostar. Drawing on historical documents, unpublished United Nations reports, articles from Serbian and Bosnian media, personal contacts in the region, and Internet postings, Sells reveals the central role played by religious mythology in the Bosnian tragedy. In addition, he makes clear how much is at stake for the entire world in the struggle to preserve Bosnia's existence as a multireligious society.

Synopsis:

The atrocities in Bosnia-Herzegovina stunned people throughout the world. With Holocaust memories still painfully vivid, we ask how this savagery is possible. Michael Sells answers by demonstrating that the Bosnian conflict is not simply a civil war or a feud of age-old adversaries. It is, he says, a systematic campaign of genocide fueled by Christian religious mythologies. Drawing on historical documents, unpublished United Nations reports, articles from Serbian and Bosnian media, and personal contacts in the region, Sells reveals religion's central role in the Bosnian tragedy, and he makes clear how much is at stake for the entire world in the struggle to preserve Bosnia's existence as a multireligious society.

Synopsis:

"Sells brings a deep historical perspective to bear on recent events, and he powerfully indicts not only those Balkan leaders who manipulate popular fears and fanaticism to further their expansionist aims, but also those Western politicians and diplomats who helped obscure the truth about the campaign by Serb and Croat religious nationalists to destroy the uniquely rich culture of Bosnia."—William Finnegan, staff reporter for The New Yorker and author of A Complicated War

Description:

Includes bibliographical references (p. 217-222) and index.

About the Author

Michael A. Sells is Professor and Chairperson of the Department of Religion at Haverford College. He is the author of several books on religion, including Mystical Languages of Unsaying (1994).

Product Details

ISBN:
9780520216624
Author:
Sells, Michael A.
Publisher:
University of California Press
Author:
Mich&amp
Author:
Al
Author:
l A. Sells
Author:
aelig
Author:
Sells, Mich&amp
Location:
Berkeley
Subject:
Comparative Religion
Subject:
History
Subject:
Eastern Europe - Yugoslavia
Subject:
Eastern Europe
Subject:
Bosnia and hercegovina
Subject:
Sociology of Religion
Subject:
Death & Dying
Subject:
Genocide
Subject:
Persecution
Subject:
Muslims
Subject:
Yugoslav war, 1991-1995
Subject:
Sociology of Religion x
Subject:
Eastern Europe - General
Subject:
Eastern Europe - Balkan Republics
Subject:
Yugoslav War, 1991-1995 -- Atrocities.
Subject:
Christianity
Subject:
Religion Comparative-General
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Series:
Comparative Studies in Religion and Society (Paperback)
Series Volume:
11
Publication Date:
19981231
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
8 b/w illustrations, 3 tables, 4 maps
Pages:
260
Dimensions:
8.20x5.48x.64 in. .69 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Europe » Eastern Europe » Former Yugoslavia
History and Social Science » Politics » General
History and Social Science » Sociology » General
History and Social Science » World History » Eastern Europe
History and Social Science » World History » Greece
Religion » Comparative Religion » General
Religion » Western Religions » Social and Political Issues

Comparative Studies in Religion and Society #11: Bridge Betrayed: Religion and Genocide in Bosnia New Trade Paper
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Product details 260 pages University of California Press - English 9780520216624 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , The atrocities in Bosnia-Herzegovina stunned people throughout the world. With Holocaust memories still painfully vivid, we ask how this savagery is possible. Michael Sells answers by demonstrating that the Bosnian conflict is not simply a civil war or a feud of age-old adversaries. It is, he says, a systematic campaign of genocide fueled by Christian religious mythologies. Drawing on historical documents, unpublished United Nations reports, articles from Serbian and Bosnian media, and personal contacts in the region, Sells reveals religion's central role in the Bosnian tragedy, and he makes clear how much is at stake for the entire world in the struggle to preserve Bosnia's existence as a multireligious society.
"Synopsis" by ,
"Sells brings a deep historical perspective to bear on recent events, and he powerfully indicts not only those Balkan leaders who manipulate popular fears and fanaticism to further their expansionist aims, but also those Western politicians and diplomats who helped obscure the truth about the campaign by Serb and Croat religious nationalists to destroy the uniquely rich culture of Bosnia."—William Finnegan, staff reporter for The New Yorker and author of A Complicated War
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