Invitation for guest lecture “Islam Instrumentalized: Religion and Politics in Historical Perspective”

Jean-Philippe Platteau from the University of Namur will be our guest speeker on Thursday, 08.11.2018 at 06:00pm to 08:00pm at the Senatssaal of the Kollegienhaus (Universitätsstr. 15, Erlangen) for his lecture “Islam Instrumentalized: Religion and Politics in Historical Perspective“.
A short introduction of his book “Islam Instrumentalized: Religion and Politics in Historical Perspective”:

Does Islam bear some responsibility for a lack of development in the countries in which it dominates?

In this book, economist Jean-Philippe Platteau challenges several specific claims seeking to connect Islam with a lack of development. Through a nuanced analysis, he disputes the widespread view that the doctrine of Islam is fundamentally reactionary, defending tradition against modernity and individual freedom, and the related view that Islam is an obstacle to modern development because of a fusion between the spiritual and political domains. At the same time, his analysis identifies how Islam’s decentralized organization, in the context of autocratic regimes, may cause political instability and postpone reforms. Ultimately, he emphasizes how secular authoritarian leaders in Muslim countries have tended to instrumentalize religion at the cost of widespread corruption and regressive measures, creating an unfortunate association between secularism and self-serving cynicism.


About his person:

Jean-Philippe Platteau is Emeritus Professor of Economics at the University of Namur, in Belgium. He has devoted his research career to studying the role of institutions in economic development and the processes of institutional change. He is the author of several books, including

*(with R. Peccoud) Culture, Institutions, and Development: New Insights into an Old Debate (2011),

*Institutions, Social Norms, and Economic Development (2000),

*and (with J. M. Baland) Halting Degradation of Natural Resources: Is There a Role for Rural Communities? (1996).


You find the full program of the “Bayerisches Orientkolloquium Wintersemester 2018/19” if you follow this link .