7. A Governmentality Approach on the Transformative Impact of Authoritarian Secularism

Öztığ L. İ.

Zeitschrift für Religion, Gesellschaft und Politik, vol.2, no.1, pp.81-99, 2019 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


There is a substantial body of literature that analyzes secularism in terms of the way religion is regulated. In this context, while moderate secularism tolerates religious expression in the public sphere, authoritarian secularism limits religion to the private realm. In this study, authoritarian secularism is analyzed by employing insights from the governmentality approach. By studying Turkey and Tunisia in their immediate post-independence periods, it is demonstrated that authoritarian secularism not only privatizes religious beliefs and practices, but it also aims to transform citizens by dictating a particular social imaginary through political intervention.