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Islam and Democracy in South Asia: An Introduction

  • Md Nazrul Islam
  • Md Saidul IslamEmail author
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Abstract

Locating on a broader South Asian context, this opening chapter focuses on the background information, literature review, research questions, objectives and significance, and methodology of the study. Sociologists earlier predicted that religion would gradually fade in importance and cease to be significant with the advent of modernization and industrialization in society. However, this prediction has been proven wrong; religion has emerged as a powerful force in the sociopolitical and cultural landscapes of the modern nation-states, particularly of the Muslim countries including Bangladesh. The role of religion in politics, especially the relationship between Islam and democracy, has been a topic of serious discussion among the scholars of political Islam or Islamism over the years. This debate has been further advanced due to the emergence of violent Islamist groups in recent years throughout various parts of the Muslim world. Bangladesh, an overwhelmingly Muslim-majority country, has also witnessed a powerful resurgence of Islamism and an emergence of Islamist militancy and terrorism. In this context, the critical study of the intersection and interplay of Islam, Islamism, and democracy in a secular Muslim country like Bangladesh takes on renewed significance.

Keywords

Religion Islam Democracy South Asia Bangladesh 

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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political StudiesShahjalal University of Science and TechnologySylhetBangladesh
  2. 2.Division of SociologyNanyang Technological UniversityJurongSingapore

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