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Democratic Values in the Muslim World

Moataz A. Fattah
Democratic Values in the Muslim World
ISBN: 978-1-58826-425-1
ISBN: 978-1-58826-545-6
ISBN: 978-1-62637-199-6
2006/205 pages/LC: 2005029753

A Choice Outstanding Academic Book!

"What do citizens of Muslim countries think of democratic values? Do they hold values that enhance or degrade prospects for democratization in their societies? These and similar questions are examined empirically in this timely, sophisticated, yet accessible book.... Highly recommended."—Choice

"Though Muslims constitute more than one-fifth of the world population, the few publications investigating their beliefs on religion and democracy have offered only hazy and contradictory conclusions. With this book, no more. Fattah's dissection of the political culture of 33 Muslim societies provides a coherent view of their beliefs, while avoiding the trap of overgeneralization. Indispensable reading, even for the nonspecialist."—Baghat Korany, The American University in Cairo

"Fattah offers a scientific, credible answer to many of the thorny questions that divide policymakers, academics, and public opinion in general.... This is a must read for anyone concerned about democracy in Muslim countries."—Mustapha Kamel Al-Sayyid, Cairo University

"A very fine book ... careful and balanced, and based on unusually rich and varied empirical data."—Bruce Rutherford, Colgate University


Is Islam compatible with democracy? Despite the seemingly endless debate on this issue, Moataz Fattah's study is a rare investigation of actual Muslim beliefs about democracy across numerous and diverse Islamic societies.

Fattah's survey analysis of more than 31,000 Muslims in 34 countries (including 3 countries in which Muslims live as minorities), enhanced by focus group discussions, offers a nuanced portrait of the link between Islam and democracy. His work advances discussion on this critical topic to a new, more sophisticated level.


Moataz A. Fattah is associate professor of political science at Cairo University and Central Michigan University.


  • Introduction.
  • Elite Opinion and the Big Debates.
  • Muslim Public Opinion and Democracy.
  • Muslim Public Opinion and Dictatorship.
  • Prospects for Reform Across Muslim Societies.
  • Conclusion: What Can Be Done?
  • Appendixes.
No rights in South Asia and Egypt.