Religiosity and democratic attitudes: an empirical study of tolerance in Turkey
Bilgili, Çağın Nazlı (2011) Religiosity and democratic attitudes: an empirical study of tolerance in Turkey. [Thesis]
Official URL: http://192.168.1.20/record=b1307431 (Table of Contents)
Following the end of the Cold War and the dissolution of the Soviet Bloc, a new wave of democratization started to be experienced throughout the world. Investigations of these democratization attempts concluded that some countries were more successful in processes of democratization while others embraced more conservative attitudes to maintain the undemocratic status quo. What might be the factor(s) easing/hindering democratization in certain settings? This thesis aims to answer this question. Focusing on the significance of individual attitudes for democratization and the factors shaping these attitudes, the impact of religiosity on democratic attitudes is analyzed comparatively across four religious affiliations – Islam, Catholicism, Protestantism and Orthodox Christianity- using the 2005-2006 World Values Survey dataset. Once the importance of religiosity to civic culture and tolerance and of the availability of civic culture and tolerance to democratization is shown through the statistical analyses, the thesis turns its attention to a more specific subject; tolerance in Turkey. In-depth interviews conducted with individuals of different religiosity and education levels aim to obtain more detailed information on individual democratic attitudes and motivations behind them. The findings are analyzed to evaluate the relevance of religiosity for the already-known intolerance in Turkey. The divergences with regard to attitudes of tolerance identified within the Turkish public signal the relevance of various factors to shaping tolerance rather than leveling it. Both religiosity and education level, besides many other factors, have significant impacts on tolerance in different aspects.
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