Michael D. Driessen, Public Religion, Democracy, and Islam: Examining the Moderation Thesis in Algeria
Much of the scholarly debate over Islam and democracy has centered on what has been referred to as the "inclusion-moderation hypothesis," and whether democratic institutions are capable of incorporating hostile religious actors. To build on this debate, the concept of inclusion and the expectations about its political effects should be broadened to include the interaction between religion-state relationships and democratization processes in predominantly Muslim societies. Inviting ambivalently democratic religious actors into the public democratic space produces dynamics of both political moderation and religious change. The mechanisms of this theoretical model can be evaluated by tracing the evolution of two Islamist political parties in Algeria, the MSP-Hamas and Ennahda-Islah.
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