Islam, Democracy and Religious Modernism in Iran (1953-2000)

From Bāzargān to Soroush


This volume focuses primarily on the question of the compatibility of Islam and democracy. It highlights the contribution of seven prominent pre- and post-revolutionary Iranian religious thinkers on the subject. Situating the discussion in its specific religious context, the book critically examines those elements that are usually referred to as democratic norms in Islamic tradition. It also provides, for the first time, an exposition of the emergence of religious intellectualism in post-revolutionary Iran, focusing on the ideas of its leading figure, Abdolkarim Soroush. His discussion of religious democratic government presents a paradigm shift in the Muslim modernists' discourse on the issue.
The book also delineates the intellectual component of the current reformist movement in Iran and sheds light on the challenges that the pro-democracy movement has to overcome.

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Forough Jahanbakhsh, Ph.D. (1997) in Islamic Studies, McGill University, is Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies at Queen's University, Canada. She specializes in modern Islamic Thought and has written extensively on religion and politics. She is currently writing a book on a newly emerging Muslim intellectual movement.
' This book makes a valuable contribution to the debate on the relationship between Islam and democracy.' The Muslim World Book Review, 2002.
All those interested in Islam and politics, intellectual history of Iran, religion and politics in contemporary Iran. Those in the fields of Islamic studies, political science, Middle Eastern and Iranian Studies.