Islam and State Sovereignty in Central Asia

  • 2/28/2013 | 7:30 PM – 9:00 PM
  • Location: Hubbard Hall, Room 208 Thomas F. Shannon Room
  • Event Type: Lecture

Central Asian countries have had mixed success negotiating the borders of Islam andstate sovereignty. In some cases this negotiation assumes immediate form, as in the delicate dialogue between secular government officials and Islamic elites. In other cases this negotiation involves not real borders but imagined identities: should the state remain secular or embrace religion; should local Islam be defended against or opened to practices from outside the region? And in still other cases this negotiation centers on hard currency and, specifically, the influence Islamic financial institutions should have in economic and human development. McGlinchey's presentation explores evolving state practices toward imams, identities and international financial institutions as Central Asian countries attempt to solidify sovereignty two decades after the Soviet collapse. Eric McGlinchey is an Associate Professor of Politics and Government at George Mason University. He is the author of Chaos, Violence, Dynasty: Politics and Islam in Central Asia (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2011). McGlinchey's areas of research include comparativepolitics, Central Asian regime change, political Islam, and the effects of Information Communication Technology (ICT) on state and society. His most recent article, "Central Asia Grows Wobbly," appears in the October 2012 issue of Current History. McGlinchey received his Ph.D. from Princeton University in 2003.