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  • 1.
    Åberg, Martin
    et al.
    Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Karlstad University, Karlstad, Sweden.
    Denk, Thomas
    Örebro University, School of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences.
    Democratization and Secularization: Towards a Process-Oriented Model2017In: Politics, Religion & Ideology, ISSN 2156-7689, E-ISSN 2156-7697, Vol. 18, no 2, p. 175-197Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The role of secularization remains underdeveloped in theoretical studies of democratization. We hold that the relation between the two processes is difficult to analyse by help of standard, cross-sectional analysis. We therefore propose a process-oriented model of democratization in relation to secularization. We suggest that these processes do not unfold in random patterns. Theoretically they follow one of four distinct paths: democratization may precede secularization, secularization may precede democratization, democratization may occur without secularization, and democratization and secularization may occur as parallel processes. The contrasts between our model and cross-sectional analysis become particularly obvious when the first and the fourth paths are considered in historical perspective: secularism (as an independent variable) is in both cases positively correlated with democracy (the dependent variable), even though these processes are reversed temporally (path one), or even occur simultaneously (path four). The model therefore demonstrates the need for further research on the relation between democratization and secularization. This includes the problem of why certain states tend to follow certain paths; whether countries may shift between paths; the problem of democratic consolidation; the role of state-formation to secularization and democratization; and the contextual dependence of the model, including the relation between institutions and values/behaviour.

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