Disciples of the state : secularization and state building in the former Ottoman World
Author(s)Fabbe, Kristin Elisabeth
Secularization and state building in the former Ottoman World
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Political Science.
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Disciples of the State seeks to explain why some former Ottoman states succeeded in effectively secularizing schooling and law and regulating religion upon independence - thereby consolidating state power- whereas others did not. The bulk of the project centers on a detailed investigation of three former-Ottoman country cases: Turkey, Greece, and Egypt. The main argument is built around a comparison of the critical historical antecedents that preceded independence in these three countries. My findings suggest that when manpower for early modernizing reforms in the 19 th century was severely constrained, state-builders were more likely to employ strategies of institutional reform based on coöptation, thereby integrating religious elites into nascent state structures in a piecemeal fashion. This turbulent (and at times violent) process of integration and coöptation spawned a dynamic of differential growth that severely weakened religious institutions. When religious institutions were weakened in this way in the 19 th century, it became possible for states to exert full control over the religious establishment upon independence, producing what we consider today to be successful "secular revolutions". I find that this dynamic played out in places as different as Greece and late Ottoman Turkey. Conversely, when manpower for modernizing reforms was more readily available (often as a result of colonial occupation) state-building strategies took a different form. Instead of coöptating religious actors, state-builders created new sets of "parallel" disciplinary institutions that largely excluded traditional elites. In this context, rather than sharing expertise, religious institutions became largely insulated from the state, re-entrenched themselves, and grew in size over the late 19th and early 20th century. Upon independence, founding regimes thus inherited a deeply fractured system of disciplinary control making "secular revolutions" much more difficult to impose. I find the that this dynamic characterized state-building trajectories in Egypt.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Political Science, 2012.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 250-282).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Political Science.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology