Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer: Turkey and Israel's approaches to incorporation of religion
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In contemporary world affairs, it is seemingly impossible to separate religion from politics. Turkey and Israel are often pointed to as states that still struggle with balancing religious and secular forces. Both Turkey and Israel's independence era leaders desired secular, modern republics, looking to French laicism as a method to subordinate religion from the state, but unlike France, neither was able to accomplish this goal. How did this come to be? I argue that the compromises of Turkish and Israeli independence-era secular leaders with religious advocacy coalitions which established Religious Ministries as a quick policy solution inadvertently paved the way for religion to exert a central influence. Through such ministries, religious groups were able to enshrine particular strains of Islam and Judaism along with their particular conceptions of citizenship based on ethno-religious grounds in place of initial republican ideals. This pull between rival definitions of citizenship--secular and religious--would go on to define debates for decades. Using the complementary lenses of historical and discursive institutionalism I will trace the processes by which particular conceptualizations of citizenship were reached by advocacy coalitions of secular and conservative forces, how these philosophies became the basis for institutions, and how those institutions went on to constrain future interpretations.