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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Democratization and Islam
Authors:Esposito, J.L.
Piscatori, J.P.
Periodical:Middle East Journal
Geographic terms:Tunisia
External link:http://search.proquest.com/pao/docview/1290788928
Abstract:The continued strength of Islamic revivalism in the 1990s and the increased participation of Islamic movements in electoral politics bring into focus the question of the compatibility of Islam and democracy. In attempting to implement their political programmes, Islamic movements in recent years in Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Pakistan, Sudan and Tunisia have seen the utility of working within the political system. The authors review the Muslim parliamentary experience, amongst others in Egypt, Tunisia and Algeria, and examine Islamic political thought on democracy. Clearly there are differences between Western notions of democracy and Islamic traditions. Although the great majority of Muslims today would subscribe to the idea that consultative government is central to the Islamic State, the proper relationship between popular sovereignty and divine sovereignty is a subject of some dispute. While democracy is a powerful symbol of legitimacy in modern Islamic political thought and practice, only time will tell whether the espousal of democracy by many contemporary Islamic movements and their participation in the electoral process are simply a means to power or represent a truly embraced goal. Ref.