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Chapter Summary

This study analyzes the dynamics of factionalism among the political elite in the Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI) and the approaches of the different political factions to economic, socio-cultural, and foreign policy issues from the Islamic Revolution in 1979 until 2007. Political factions represent the different approaches to economic, socio-cultural, and foreign policy. The main political factions are the Conservative faction, the Pragmatist faction, and the Reformist faction. The political factions defend the material interests of their members and of economic groups that support them. The Conservative faction represents the interests of the traditional economic sector, as well as ultra-orthodox clergy, and the highly religious public. The Pragmatist faction is supported by (religious) technocrats, parts of the middle class, and segments of liberal tendencies. The Reformist faction represents the interests of a wide range of (secular) social groups among which women, students, and intellectuals.

Keywords: foreign policy; Islamic Republic of Iran (IRI); Islamic revolution; political faction



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