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Realigning religion and power in Central Asia: Islam, nation-state and (post)socialism

Hann, Chris and Pelkmans, Mathijs (2009) Realigning religion and power in Central Asia: Islam, nation-state and (post)socialism. Europe-Asia Studies, 61 (9). pp. 1517-1541. ISSN 0966-8136

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Identification Number: 10.1080/09668130903209111


This article investigates the changing intersections between religion and politics in Muslim Central Asia. Adopting a long-term historical perspective, it shows how successive regimes meshed and clashed with Islam in their efforts to assert worldly power. Religion was uniformly marginalised in the era of Marxist-Leninist-Maoist socialism, but the cases of Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Xinjiang show that religion has been playing somewhat different roles across the region since 1991. For the secular authorities, Islam may be valued as a source of nation building or it may be feared as a potentially destabilising force. The resulting attempts to co-opt, channel and control religious expression provide insights into the nature of secular power and raise questions concerning the applicability to this region of influential theories in the sociology of religion.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2010 Taylor & Francis Group
Divisions: Anthropology
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BP Islam. Bahaism. Theosophy, etc
Date Deposited: 02 Feb 2010 13:47
Last Modified: 04 Feb 2024 01:57

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