Honors Capstone Project
Date of Submission
Arts and Science
Capstone Prize Winner
Won Capstone Funding
Comparative Politics | Models and Methods | Other Political Science | Political Science
When listening to the news one day I heard the president of a nation describe wiping another country off the map. Later I heard from the same president that his country would defy United Nation recommendations and continue their nuclear program. The media took a great interest in this mans’ speeches and their potential implications. They portrayedIranas a country on the brink, challenging the world to stop them. The media unfortunately was focusing on the wrong man’s rhetoric because although he is labeled as president ofIran, he will not have a say in declaring war on another nation nor will he make important decisions concerning their nuclear program. In this nation the Supreme Leader makes the final decisions in all facets of government. So why have citizens around the world become so angered and disgusted with a whole country because of the rhetoric of one man, especially one who does not even hold the power to decide on the policy about which he talks? The answer is that many of us simply do not understand the government ofIranand its structure of power. This government is unique because it integrates religion into all aspects of government, which is called a theocracy, something very different from Western style governments. Islam is a conservative, strict religion, and managing a country in the present world on those traditional values is tough. Technology and knowledge of other cultures is easily available and it is hard to censor anything in the modern world.Irancontrary to what many would think has been successful in bringing religion and government together in today’s world. Though they battle to keep a growing youth population content in the modern world, the government ofIranstill has a firm grip on power. This guide attempts to bridge the knowledge gap that has formed. After reading this guide, you will be able to understand who inIranis actually devising its policy, who holds power, and how religion was pervasive in its construction and now in its implementation. It also gives the reader a concise history of the country, what led to this type of government, who played a part in getting it to its present form, and who is still influential in its decision making. As a student I wanted this information readily available instead of having to sift through countless books and articles to find the simple information needed. Here I have compiled what I wanted as a student of politics, a guide to a unique government in the forefront of international politics.
Linhardt, Evan, "A Student’s Guide to the Unique Iranian Theocracy" (2008). Syracuse University Honors Program Capstone Projects. 547.
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