Winning Revolutions
The Psychosocial Dynamics of Revolts for Freedom, Fairness, and Rights
by J. Harold Ellens, Editor
November 2013, 856pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
3 volumes, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-0372-7
$163, £121, 136€, A233
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-0373-4
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Why do Fundamentalist religious movements often spawn violence?

The product of 35 senior scholars' research, these volumes examine the psychology driving the religious, political, and economic forces that cause turbulence and violence in human society.

Religious, political, and economic revolts have defined the human experience throughout history. These kinds of universal turbulence continue to be the dominate source of human suffering and perplexity during the first decade of the 21st century. What can intensive study of the psychodynamics of cultural and social eruptions tell us that may serve to move cultures around the world beyond ongoing strife? This work seeks to find out, examining the spectrum of cultural and social eruptions from ancient Jewish, Christian, and Muslim revolutions to the modern day economic and political turbulence in Eastern Europe, the Near East, and Latin America. The breadth of this three-volume set ranges from the 12th century BCE to the current struggles in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria; and from the irrational violence of the French Revolution to the genuine quest for liberty of the American Revolution and the Singing Revolutions in the Baltic States in recent decades. Each volume is introduced with a description of its philosophical perspective and concludes with a brief summarization of the takeaways of the research presented.


  • Comprehensively analyzes the entire range of economic, political, and religious factors in social revolts
  • Brings to bear evidence from ancient archaeology, up-to-date psychological models, thoroughgoing sociological analysis, and objective historical reporting
  • Provides unprecedented coverage of the relevant issues in Greco-Roman, Jewish, Christian, and Muslim religious dynamics that cause immense sociocultural turbulence and watershed world change
  • Presents a proposed unified theory of revolution throughout the work while also distinguishing and identifying individual religious, political, and economic forces and outcomes
J. Harold Ellens, PhD, is a retired professor of psychology and philosophy, a retired Presbyterian theologian and pastor, and a psychotherapist in private practice. He is the author of 230 published volumes on the interface of psychology and religio-cultural issues, including Praeger's The Destructive Power of Religion: Violence in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; The Healing Power of Spirituality: How Faith Helps Humans Thrive; Miracles: God, Science, and Psychology in the Paranormal; and Psychology and the Bible: A New Way to Read the Scriptures. Ellens holds a doctoral degree in psychology from Wayne State University as well as a doctorate in biblical studies from the University of Michigan.
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