Sociology of Shiʿite Islam is a comprehensive study of the development of Shiʿism. Its bearers first emerged as a sectarian elite, then a hierocracy and finally a theocracy. Imamate, Occultation and the theodicy of martyrdom are identified as the main components of the Shiʻism as a world religion. In these collected essays Arjomand has persistenly developed a Weberian theoretical framework for the analysis of Shiʿism, from its sectarian formation in the eighth century through the establishment of the Safavid empire in the sixteenth century, to the Islamic revolution in Iran in the twentieth century. These studies highlight revolutionary impulses embedded in the belief in the advent of the hidden Imam, and the impact of Shiʻite political ethics on the authority structure of pre-modern Iran and the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
The themes of nation-building, post-colonial modernization and constitution-making, post-communist return to the rule of law and constitutional reconstruction, the global expansion of judicial power and judicial activism by the constitutional courts are usually studied by different specialists with somewhat narrow foci. This book is a unique and ambitious interdisciplinary attempt at the integration of these related fields, and offers a timely theoretical synthesis of the most important global constitutional trends in the last half-century. These essays by prominent authorities on different subjects and geographical areas offer a comprehensive, comparative view of the most important constitutional developments of two eras, bringing together the transplantation of the constitutional pattern of the nation-state and the current wave of globalization of constitutionalism and the rule of law. Contributors are: S.A.Arjomand, Nathan J. Brown, Ruth Gavison, Julian Go, Keyvan Tabari, Heinz Klug, Jill Cottrell, Yash Ghai, László Sólyom, Jacek Kurczewski, Anders Fogelklou, Grażyna Skąpska, Dieter Grimm, Kim Lane Scheppele, Ruth Rubio Marín , and Dicle Kogacioğlu.