Overcoming the Ulama: Globalizing Iran's Political Economy
NAVAL POSTGRADUATE SCHOOL MONTEREY CA
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In the nearly thirty years following the Islamic Revolution, two opposing forces -- an isolated conservative theocracy versus globalization -- struggling to coexist, placed Iran in a precarious position to either move back toward the traditional ideologies that prompted such a radical transformation, away from the pressures, challenges and interdependencies created through globalization, or to participate more actively in the outside world. The religious establishment or ulama play the most significant role in the dichotomy between Irans theocratic conservatism and the position Iran takes in globalization. The modern history of Iran is replete with examples of the ulama actively participating in the political economy of the country, usually acting with their own interests in mind. Despite basing their actions within the theology and jurisprudence of Shia Islam, significant space exists with the principles of Islamic economic thought to allow the ulama in Iran to lead their country into the global economy. Yet the uncertainties and diffusion of power brought about through the processes of globalization keep the religious establishment from doing so in an effort to maintain their control over all Iranian institutions captured after the revolution.
- Economics and Cost Analysis
- Government and Political Science