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Adamczyk, E., LaFreeG. (2015). Religiosity and reactions to terrorism. Social Science Research 52: 17-29

Although many of the world’s most serious outbreaks of conflict and violence center on religion, social science research has had relatively little to say about religion’s unique role in shaping individuals’ attitudes about these events. In this paper we investigate whether Americans’ religious beliefs play a central role in shaping attitudes toward the continuing threat of terrorism and their willingness to assist officials in countering these perceived threats. Our analysis of an original data collection of almost 1600 Americans shows that more religious respondents are more likely to express concerns about terrorism. However, this relationship is mediated by their level of conservatism. We also find that more religious respondents are more likely to claim that they will assist government officials in countering terrorism. This relationship remained even after accounting for conservatism, and people’s general willingness to help police solve crimes like breaking and entering.


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