Episode: Noel Johnson and Mark Koyama on *Persecution and Toleration*


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Noel Johnson and Mark Koyama on *Persecution and Toleration*

How did religious freedom emerge — and why did it arrive so late? In their forthcoming book, fellow Mason economists Noel Johnson and Mark Koyama argue that while most focus on the role of liberal ideas in establishing religious freedom, it was instead institutional changes — and the growth of state capacity in particular — that played the decisive role.

In their conversation with Tyler, Johnson and Koyama discuss the ‘long road to religious freedom’ and more, including the link between bad weather and Jewish persecution, why China evolved into such a large political unit, whether the Black Death proves Paul Romer wrong, scapegoating, usury prohibitions in history, and the economic impact of volcanic eruptions.

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