ISBN: 9780199348084 Publisher: Oxford University PressYear of publishing: 2015 Format: Hardback
No of Pages: 264 Language: English
Religious repression-defined as the non-violent suppression of civil and political rights-is a growing global phenomenon, but one that has not received much attention. Most often practiced in authoritarian...Read more
Religious repression-defined as the non-violent suppression of civil and political rights-is a growing global phenomenon, but one that has not received much attention. Most often practiced in authoritarian countries, levels of religious repression nevertheless vary across a range of non-democratic regimes, including illiberal democracies and competitive authoritarian states. The Varieties of Religious Repression argues that seemingly benign regulations and restrictions on religion are tools that non-democratic leaders use to repress independent civic activity, effectively maintaining their hold on power. Ani Sarkissian examines the interaction of political competition and the structure of religious divisions in society, presenting a theory of the variances of religious repression across non-democratic regimes. Sarkissian offers a new way of understanding the commonalties and differences of non-democratic regimes by focusing on the targets of religious repression.
Drawing on quantitative data from 101 authoritarian states from 1990-2010 and case studies of sixteen countries from around the world, Sarkissian explores the varieties of repression states impose on religious expression, association, and political activities, and describes the obstacles these present for democratization, pluralism, and the development of an independent civil society. Read less
About the author: Ani Sarkissian
Ani Sarkissian is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Michigan State University.
Ani Sarkissian steers the scholarly discussion of religion and global politics toward what has been terra nullius authoritarian regimes. She charts out this terrain masterfully by identifying the...Read more
Ani Sarkissian steers the scholarly discussion of religion and global politics toward what has been terra nullius authoritarian regimes. She charts out this terrain masterfully by identifying the wide variety of forms that religious repression can take and by supporting some bold empirical claims about when such repression will be most severe and how wide it is likely to extend. What she leaves us with is a map that, unlike most, depicts both broad contours and a wealth of interesting detail The study of religion and politics has typically focused on interactions between church and state in a variety of democratic nations. Ani Sarkissian moves our understanding to a whole new dimension in her wide-ranging, but remarkably nuanced, study of religious repression in autocratic regimes. This book represents a theoretical and empirical tour de force that will not only be of interest to those studying religion, but scholars who are interested in the political dynamics of authoritarian regimes. Anthony Gill, author of The Political Origins of Religious Liberty Ani Sarkissian draws on data from 101 countries to brilliantly tackle a vital question: How do politicians in non-democratic states use religious repression as an instrument of their rule and why? This book makes an important contribution to our understanding of the relationship between religious pluralism, democracy, and freedom of religious practice and expression. Read less