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The West and IslamReligion and Political Thought in World History$
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Antony Black

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199533206

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199533206.001.0001

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Changes in Religion and Politics

Changes in Religion and Politics

(p.133) 7 Changes in Religion and Politics
The West and Islam

Antony Black (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The papalist revolution of the 11th century led to greater divergence between the political thought of the West and of Islam and Byzantium. Pope Gregory VII's views on papal sovereignty provided a prototype for the modern Western state. He and his supporters desacralized kingship. Their attempt to subordinate the state to the church provoked a reaction which led to secular theories of the state. This ‘first European revolution’ coincided with the rise of city republics and economic development. Sunni Islam was consolidated through a firmer alliance between the sultans and the 'ulama. But the Mongol invasions hastened economic and cultural decline. The Shi'ite revolution in 16th-century Iran resulted in social dominance for the Shi'ite 'ulama. This laid a basis for their rise to political power in the 20th century. These changes in the relationship between religion and politics had the opposite results in the West and in Islam.

Keywords:   papalist, Pope Gregory VII, sovereignty, desacralized, secular, city republics, Sunni Islam, Shi'ite revolution, Iran

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