Democracy in Islamic Political Thought


This paper surveys the growth and various phases of and influences on the concept of democracy in the Islamic political thought of the last two centuries. Among the thinkers covered in the survey are Rifa'a Tahtawi (1801-73), Khairuddin at-Tunis (1810-99), Jamal ad-Din al-Afghani (1838-97), Muhammad Abduh (1849-1905), Abdurrahman al-Kawakibi (1849-1903), Rashid Rida (1865-1935), Hasan al-Banna (1904-49), Ali Abd Ar-Raziq (1888-1966), Sayyid Qutb (1906-66), Sa'id Hawwa, and Malik Bennabi (1905-73). Reference is made to the influence of Sayyid Mawdudi (1903-79), on the thought of Sayyid Qutb. The paper traces also the bearing of Bennabi's thought on Rachid Ghannouchi and on the Islamic movements of our times.