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The Explosive Combination of Religious Decentralisation and Autocracy: the Case of Islam

Emmanuelle Auriol () and Jean-Philippe Platteau

No 11815, CEPR Discussion Papers from C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers

Abstract: The relationship between religion and politics is explored from a theoretical standpoint. Religious clerics can be seduced by an autocrat and political stability is at stake. The autocrat's decisions consist of two measures susceptible of antagonising religious clerics: adopting secular reforms and unduly appropriating part of national wealth, which generally are complement. Compared to centralized religions, decentralized religions, such as Islam, tend to discourage secular reforms and corruption but those effects are not guaranteed if the autocrat accepts political instability. The main hypotheses and the central results of the theory are illustrated with regime case studies that refer to contemporary times.

Keywords: Autocracy; centralized and decentralized religion; Corruption; economic development; instrumentalization of religion; Islam; reforms (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D02 D72 N40 O57 P48 Z12 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-mic
Date: 2017-01
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