Charity or Mass Mobilization? Public Religion and the Struggle for Economic Justice

  • Siavash Saffari


In the course of the 1979 Revolution, the synthesis of public faith and egalitarian ideals played an important role in mobilizing the economically disenfranchised masses. In the post-revolutionary context, however, religiously oriented groups have largely abandoned their previous mobilizational approach, focusing instead on charity activities. This chapter examines a number of factors contributing to such a shift, including the effective appropriation by the ruling Islamists of the pro-poor discourses of religious and secular left as well as the difficulty of using the mobilizational capacities of religion to challenge a religious state. It is then argued that the dual factors of the continuation of economic liberalization policies and the unsustainability of the charity approach will inevitably necessitate the revival of a radical mobilizational approach.


Temporary Contract Mass Mobilization Economic Justice Islamic Republic Economic Liberalization 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Siavash Saffari
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Asian Languages and CivilizationsSeoul National UniversitySeoulKorea

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