MGS Alumni, Kamram Bokhari, publishes book with Palgrave-Macmillan

Kamram Bokhari recently published Political Islam in the Age of Democratization. The book, co-authored with Farid Senzai of Santa Clara University, was listed by The Foreign Policy Association among the ten most significant books of 2013. The political science department offers its congratulations.

According to the authors, we have used democratization theory to try and make sense of the evolution of Islamism in the Middle East and South Asia since 1990. Our thesis is that democracy in the Muslim world will take root but it will be different from what we have in the west – given that Muslim democracies (to varying degrees) will allow for religion to have some (as yet undefined) role in public affairs. That said, there will be countries that may not democratize given that more radical forms of Islamism are dominant there. We offer two separate 3-tiered typologies that classify different Islamist movements. The first is based on how different Islamist groups seek to establish their envisioned ‘Islamic’ polity and the second one is based on the different attitudes that exist among Islamists towards democracy. In addition, we offer a spectrum that identifies the various types of Islamists and secularists with regards to their views on the role of religion in politics. We then apply this framework on seven case studies: Muslim Brotherhood, Salafists, Taliban, al-Qaeda, Iran, Arab Shia Islamists (Hezbollah & Iraqi Shia parties), and Turkey’s ruling AK Party.

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