ANTH Seminar Series | Secularism, Theocracy, Anthropocracy: Thee Styles of Politics
Over the past three decades, many once taken for granted assumptions about processes of secularism have been questioned and revised. One unifying feature of these reassessments is recognition of the plurality of social-historical contexts of secularism[s], germane to their contrasting political arrangements. Given this variety of ‘secular’ political systems, the question becomes whether we should grant the same word – secularism – to all of them?
In this paper I propose that we should not, and suggest the term anthropocracy to describe a particular non-theocratic project of political order. To illustrate the argument, I present an example of what I interpret to be an exemplary anthropocratic political system, that of the Turkish Republic.
About the speaker
Chris Houston is an Associate Professor of Anthropology in the Macquarie University. His research interests fall in the broad areas of the anthropology of the city and the politics and lived experience of Islam, with a particular focus in Turkey.