Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

The Post-Islamist Turn and the Contesting Visions of Democratic Public Religion

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Sociology of Islam

This article examines the relationship between religion and sociopolitical development in the context of the re-emergence of popular social movements in Muslim societies in the Middle East and North Africa. It makes a case that despite the decline of Islamism as a mode of social mobilization, religion maintains an active presence within the public sphere. Focusing on the religious-political discourses of Abdolkarim Soroush and neo-Shariatis, as the representatives of two distinct post-Islamist currents in post-revolutionary Iran, the article identifies some of the capacities and limitations of their particular conceptions of democratic public religiosity for contributing to the ongoing processes of change in Iran and other contemporary Muslim societies.

Affiliations: 1: Visiting Fellow, Columbia University,


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

1. Abrahamian Ervand ( 1989). Radical Islam: The Iranian Mojahedin . New Haven: Yale University Press.
2. Alijani Reza ( 2011). "Pre-secular Iranians in a Post-secular Age: The Death of God, the Resurrection of God, trans. Mojtaba Mahdavi and Siavash Saffari". Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East , Vol 31( 1): 2733.
3. ———. Interview by author. (20 November 2012).
4. Bayat Asef ( 1996). "The Coming of a Post Islamist Society". Critique: Critical Middle Eastern Studies , Vol 5( 9): 4352
5. ———( 2007). Islam and Democracy: What Is the Real Question? . Leiden: Amsterdam University Press.
6. ———( 2011). "The Post-Islamist Revolutions: What the Revolts in the Arab World Mean?". Foreign Affairs– Snapshots [Online], 26 April. Available from (Accessed 9 April 2013).
7. ——( 2013). Post-Islamism at Large. In Bayat Asef (ed.), Post-Islamism: The Many Faces of Political Islam , pp. 334. New York: Oxford University Press.
8. Casanova José ( 1994). " Public Religions in the Modern World ". Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
9. Dabagh Soroush ( 1388/2010). Pedaran va pesaran: ehsan shariati va soroush dabagh az andisheh khod va pedaraneshan migooyand ( Fathers and Sons: Ehsan Shariati and Soroush Dabagh on their Own Ideas and their Fathers’ Legacies), interview with Reza Khojasteh Rahimi. Mehrnameh1 [Online], esfand/March. Available from: . (Accessed 7 January 7 2013).
10. Dallmayr Fred ( 2003). "Review of Jurgen Habermas, Religion and Rationality: Essays on Reason, God, and Modernity". Notre Dame Philosophical Reviewsno. 2 (2003), (accessed 8 June 2012).
11. ———( 2011). "Whither Democracy? Religion, Politics and Islam". Philosophy and Social Criticism , Vol 37( 4): 437448.
12. Diamond Larry ,, Plattner Marc F. ,, and Costopoulos Philip J. (eds.) ( 2005). World Religions and Democracy. Maryland: Johns Hopkins University Press.
13. Gellner Ernest ( 1994). Forward. In Ahmed, Akbar S., and Hastings Donnan, Islam, Globalization and Postmodernity , pp. xxii. London: Routledge.
14. Gerges Fawaz A. ( 1999). "The Decline of Revolutionary Islam in Algeria and Egypt". Survival , Vol 41( 1): 113125.
15. Ghamari-Tabrizi Behrooz ( 2004). "Contentious Public Religion: Two Conceptions of Islam in Revolutionary Iran Ali Shariati and Abdolkarim Soroush". International Sociology , Vol 19( 4): 504523.
16. Göle Nilüfer ( 2000). "Snapshots of Islamic Modernities". Daedalus, Vol 129( 1): 91117.
17. Hashemi Nader ( 2009). Islam, Secularism, and Liberal Democracy: Toward a Democratic Theory for Muslim Societies . New York: Oxford University Press.
18. Hefner Robert W. ( 2001). "Public Islam and the Problem of Democratization". Sociology of Religion, Vol 62( 4): 491514.
19. Hunter Shireen T. ,( 2008). "Islamic Reformist Discourses in Iran: Proponents and Prospects". In Hunter Shireen T. (ed.), Reformist Voices of Islam: Mediating Islam and Modernity , pp. 3395. New York: M. E. Sharpe.
20. Jahanbakhsh Forough ( 2001). "Abdolkarim Soroush: New ‘Revival of Religious Sciences".’ isimNewsletter , Vol 8: 21.
21. ———( 2004). "The Emergence and Development of Religious Intellectualism in Iran". Historical Reflexions , Vol 30( 3): 469480.
22. Kepel Gilles ( 2002). " Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam ". London: I.B. Tauris.
23. Khojasteh-Rahimi Reza ( 1386/2007). "Soroush, jame’eh-e baz va doshmananash: az mobaheseh ba marxist-ha ta mojadeleh ba haidegerist-ha (Soroush, Open Societyand Its Enemies: From Debating Marxists to Quarrelling with Heideggerians)". Shahrvand Emrooz11 [Online], 21 mordad/12 August. Available from: (Accessed 25 November 2013).
24. Lewis Bernard ( 1988). The Political Language of Islam . Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
25. Mahdavi Mojtaba ( 2011). "Post-Islamist Trends in Post-Revolutionary Iran". C omparative Studies of South Asia, Africa, and the Middle East , Vol 31( 1): 94109.
26. ——— (2013). "One Bed and Two Dreams? Contentious Public Religion in the Discourses of Ayatollah Khomeini and Ali Shariati". Studies in Religion/Sciences Religieuses published online (20 September): 128.
27. Norris Pippa ,, and Inglehart Ronald ( 2004). Sacred and Secular: Religion and Politics Worldwide . New York: Cambridge University Press.
28. Outram Dorinda ( 1995). The Enlightenment . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
29. Political Studies and Research Institute, n.d.. Imam Khomeini’s Decree Regarding the Establishment of the Cultural Revolution Institute [Online]. Available from: Accessed 25 November 2013).
30. Rahmani Taghi ( 1389/2010). "dolat-e dini, sekoolaar, ya dolat-e ghanoonmand? (Religion State, Secular State, or Law-bound State?)". Rooz[Online], 27 ordibehesht/17 May. Available from (Accessed 20 January 2013).
31. Rahnema Ali ( 2000). An Islamic Utopian: A Political Biography of Ali Shari’ati . London: I.B. Tauris.
32. Roy Olivier ( 2004). Globalized Islam: the Search for a New Ummah . New York: Columbia University Press.
33. Sadri Mahmoud ( 2001). "Sacral Defense of Secularism: The Political Theologies of Soroush, Shabestari, and Kadivar". International Journal of Politics, Culture and Society , Vol 15( 2): 257270.
34. Sayyid Bobby S. ( 1997). A Fundamental Fear: Eurocentrisn and the Emergence of Islamism . London: Zed Books.
35. Shariati Ali ( 1348/1969). Toynbee: tamadon-mazhab(Toynbee: Civilization-Religion), C.W. 22. Ali Shariati: The Complete Collection of Works[ cd rom]. Tehran: Shariati Cultural Foundation, Tehran.
36. ———( 1355/1976 a). Erfan, barabari, azadi(Spirituality, Equality, Freedom), C.W. 2. Ali Shariati: The Complete Collection of Works[ cd rom]. Tehran: Shariati Cultural Foundation, Tehran.
37. ———( 1355/1976 b). Naameh beh Ehsan(Letter to Ehsan), C.W. 1. Ali Shariati: The Complete Collection of Works[ cd rom], Tehran: Shariati Cultural Foundation.
38. ———( 1993). Religion vs. Religion, trans. Laleh Bakhtiar. New Mexico: Abjad Book Designers & Builders.
39. Shariati Ehsan ,( 1379/2000). " Nayandishideh mandeh haye falsafi andisheh ye mo’alem Shariati(The Philosophical Unthoughts of the Thought of Teacher Shariati)". In Shariati Bonyad (ed.) Dar hashiyeh matn( On the Margins of the Text), pp. 935. Tehran: Shahr-e Aftab.
40. ———( 1387/2008). " Hamchenan armangara, enghelabi, va ideolojik hastam(I Remain Utopian, Revolutionary, and Ideological)", interview with Susan Shariati. Shahrvand-e Emrooz [Online], 10 tir/30 June. Available from (Accessed 3 November 2011).
41. Shariati Sara ,( 1379/2000). "Dar bareh sharaiet-e emkan-e moderniteh dini (On the Conditions for the Possibility of Religious Modernity)". In Shariati Bonyad ,(ed.), Dar hashiyeh matn( On the Margins of the Text), edited by: Shariati Bonyad , pp. 131166. Tehran: Shahr-e Aftab.
42. ———( 1385/2006). "Din-e aameh, din-e khamoosh (Popular Religion, Silent Religion)". Iranian Sociological Association [Online]. Available from (Accessed 8 November 2013).
43. ———( 1388/2009). "Naghsh-e din dar tahavolat-e akhir (The Role of Religion in Recent Developments)". Talar[Online], 28 aban/19 November. Available from (Accessed 10 November 2013).
44. ——( 1390/2011). " Eslaah dini beh masaabeh eslaah ejtemaaei? (Religious Reform as SocialReform?)". Sara Shariati Internet Archives[Online], 28 farvardin/17 April. Available from (Accessed 6 February 2013).
45. ———. Interview by author. (28 November 2012).
46. Shariati Susan ( 1385/2006). "Paradox-haay-e vojdan-e asheghaneh dar negah-e shariati (The Paradoxes of the Loving Consciousness in Shariati’s Thought)". Madreseh, 3 [Online], ordibehesht/May. Available from (Accessed 2 March 2011).
47. ———( 1386/2008). " Shariati, moalem kodam enghelab?(Shariati, the Teacher of Which Revolution?)". Shahrvand Emrooz[Online]. Available from (Accessed 11 July 2011).
48. Smith Christian ( 1996). Disruptive Religion: The Force of Faith in Social Movement Activism . New York: Routledge.
49. Soroush Abdolkarim ( 1372/1993). " hokoomat-e demokratik-e dini?(Democratic Religious State?)". Kyan , Vol 11: 1215.
50. ———( 1378/1999). Bast-e tajrobe-ye nabavi( The Expansion of Prophetic Experience). Tehran: Serat.
51. ———( 1384/2006). Az shariati( On Shariati). Tehran: Serat.
52. ———( 1388/2010a). " Ba refrandom ekhtiarat-e vali-e faghih hazf shavad(The Powers of Guardian- Jurist Must be Eliminated in a Referendum)", interview with Farzaneh Barzpoor. Rooz[Online], 27 bahman/16 February. Available from (Accessed 22 November 2013).
53. ———(1388/2010b). Demokrasy az eslam ghabel-e estekhraj nist(Democracy Cannot be Extracted from Islam), interview with Nooshabeh Amiri. Rooz [Online], 23 esfand /14 March. Available from (Accessed 20 November 2013).
54. ———( 2004). "Rationalist Traditions in Islam, paper presented at the Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut ", Heidelberg, Germany, November12–13, 2004. Available from (Accessed 2 December 2013).
55. ———( 2007). "The Word of Mohammad", interview with Michel Hoebink. Abdolkarim Soroush[Online], 1December 2007. Available from (Accessed 10 November 2013).
56. Stacher Joshua A. ( 2002). "Post-Islamist Rumblings in Egypt: The Emergence of the Wasat Party". Middle East Journal , Vol 56( 3): 415432.
57. Stoeckl Kristina ( 2010). "The Impact of the Return of Religion on Theoretical Approaches to Democracy and Governance in the Social and Political Sciences". Sociology Compass , Vol 4( 6): 354364.
58. Taylor Charles ,( 2011). "Why We Need a Radical Redefinition of Secularism". In Mendieta Eduardo ,and VanAntwerpen Jonathan (eds.), The Power of Religion in the Public Sphere , pp. 3459. New York: Columbia University Press.
59. Thompson E.P. ( 1963). The Making of the English Working Class . New York: Random House.
60. West Cornel ( 2004). Democracy Matters: Winning the Fight against Imperialism . New York: The Penguin Press.
61. Yousefi Eshkevari Hassan ( 1377/1998). " Edameh projeh na-tamam(Continuing an Unfinished Project)", interview with Reza Khojasteh Rahimi. Toos, 764 (khordad/June): 3031.
62. ———( 2006). "Autobiography". In Mir-Hosseini Ziba ,, and Tapper Richard (eds.), Islam and Democracy in Iran: Eshkevari and the Quest for Reform , pp. 4145. London: I.B. Tauris.

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Sociology of Islam — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation