Interdisciplinary Journal of Research on ReligionInstitute for Studies of Relgion
IJRR :: 2019 Volume 15 :: Article 8
2019 Volume 15, Article 8
Effect of Religious Legislation on Religious Behavior: The Ramadan Fast

Author: Hannah M. Ridge (Duke University)

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State laws compelling citizens to comply with elements of religious law – also known as religious legislation – are globally pervasive. Previous research has well documented the incidence of myriad examples of religious legislation. These laws’ practical effect on citizens’ behavior, however, has been less examined. This article looks at the effect of one piece of religious legislation: state laws enforcing the Ramadan fast. It demonstrates that the use of state power to sanction violations of religious law significantly increases citizens’ compliance with this religious law.

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