In September 2016, South Africa based journalist Yazeed Kamaldien reports on the Hajj, traveling to Madinah and Makkah in Saudi Arabia to follow the route of millions of Muslim pilgrims from around the world. In order to help journalists who are planning to cover this major religious event this year or in the future, Yazeed Kamaldien shares with the IARJ some helpful tips.
ACCRA, Ghana—The International Association of Religion Journalists is bringing together leading religion journalists and scholars for our July 28-29, 2016, conference “Reporting on Religion and Spirituality in Africa.”
“The world can learn a lot from the experiences and insights of Africans,” said IARJ Executive Director Endy Bayuni.
Issues of faith in public life dominate world news, but religion is often misunderstood or ignored in media coverage. It’s understandable. The world’s religions are the result of hundreds of years of history, prayer and tradition, and this is not easy to reflect and to explain in newspaper, radio, TV or via new-media formats. Many journalists are seeking keys to unlock this complex beat that sparks enormous public interest.
Covering large spiritual gatherings and religious events and reporting outside your native region carries many challenges. Among these is knowing how to handle yourself appropriately and improve your odds for getting the best story that you can. The IARJ is offering this occasional series on how to work in lands and cover events that you may not be familiar with. Journalist Bhavya Srivastava, the author of this report, is a founding member of the IARJ and a resident of India.
We live in an age when a presumed irrevocable gulf between science and religion is perpetuated in the public sphere. But new evidence is emerging that reveals a far more complex picture of the relationship between these powerful social forces. One eight-region study of Religion among Scientists in International Context found a majority of scientists consider themselves either religious or spiritual, or both, in all regions except the United States, United Kingdom and France. However, there is still a lot of work to be done to address long-held animosities. On both sides.