The ACRPS Second Annual Conference on Democratic Transition was held on 28-29 September 2013 in Doha, on the topic “Islamist Movements and Democratic Governance: Questions of Citizenship, Nation, and State”, with the participation of 40 scholars.
Due to the large number of participants, two sessions following different themes were held at the same time. The ten sessions conference covered the following themes: Islamic thought and the concept of the State; Islamic thought and citizenship; the concept of the state within the Arab and international context; Islamic thought and citizenship in the experiences of Islamic movements; the nation and the state in Islamic historical experience, democracy, citizenship and the civilian state, and Islamic movements and the concept of nation, in addition to other topics.
While the first track dealt with Islamic thought and citizenship, the parallel track dealt with Islamic thought and the concept of the state. The presentations looked at governance in post-Arab spring Islamism, the transition from a religious community to a state of citizens in one session and the rights of non-Muslims in Islamic State projects in the other. The researchers looked at Islamic compatibility with human rights and analysed the rights of minorities in historical Muslim societies compared to the modern day. The next session looked at the Muslim Brotherhood and Islamist movements in different Arab countries from Morocco to Yemen. The parallel track explored the development of the relationship between political Islam and the modern national state. The researchers concluded that the modern state left deep traces in the Islamic currents, ranging from estrangement, adaptation, and integration.
The third session of the conference revolved around Islamic thought and the concept of the state in the first track. It touched on the concept of a civil state in wake of the Arab Spring transformations, the challenge of moving from the "da'wa" project to the "state" project and integrating the requirements of transition in the Islamist project. Also considered was Shi’i Islamism and the relationship between the marja’ and citizenship and the civil state in various Shi’i schools of thought.
The final session looked at authenticity and modernity in modern Islamic political thought. The papers focused on the points of conflict and convergence between modernity and heritage and the crisis in the political discourse of Islamic movements between the basic concepts of political modernity and traditional concepts in Islamic jurisprudence and Islamic law and democracy.
The Annual Conference on Democratic Transition
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