Leading the Faithful: The Role of Religious Authorities in the Middle East

Leading the Faithful: The Role of Religious Authorities in the Middle East

This research initiative investigates the dynamics, position of, and role played by spiritual leaders of different religious communities in the Middle East during and after the Arab uprisings. The research project includes examinations of the leaders of the multiple religions and faiths present in the Middle East, which will include Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Bahá’ism, Druze, Yazidism, Alevism, and Zoroastrianism. The project  explores a variety of topics such as religious leadership; traditional authority; sovereignty; state conceptions and management of religions, faiths, and sacred sites; women religious leaders; training and religious qualifications; political economy of the religious establishment; and religious-political movements, sources of power, and resistance. 

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Background and Scope of the Project

The Arab uprisings and their aftermath have prompted scholars to re-examine the role played by various state institutions and different social actors across the Middle East, and recent scholarship has…
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Sociology of Islam

Mehran Kamrava, guest ed., “Leading the Faithful: Religious Authority in the Contemporary Middle East,” CIRS Special Issue of Sociology of Islam 6, no. 2 (June 2018). The post-2011 Middle East…
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Working Group Meetings

Click here to read about “Leading the Faithful: The Role of Religious Authorities in the Middle East Working Group I” Click here to read about “Leading the Faithful: The Role of Religious…