• Summary
  • Contents

Does democracy mean greater accountability and less corruption? Is press freedom a prerequisite for economic development? Should religious fundamentalists have a greater voice in government?

Comparative politics students will benefit from CQ Researcher's award-winning, non-partisan reporting that looks at today's most important problems, ranging from democratization and regime change to policies on immigration, welfare, and religion. Each essay identifies key players, explores what's at stake, and shows how past and current developments impact the future. Reports include maps, charts, a chronology, and a yes/no feature box.

Religious Fundamentalism
Religious fundamentalism
Burqas enshroud women in Kabul, Afghanistan's capital, reflecting life under strict Islamic regimes like the Taliban. Overthrown in 2001, the radically fundamentalist Taliban has regained control in some parts of the country. In addition to requiring the burqa, it restricts women's movements, prevents men from shaving or girls from being educated and prohibits singing and dancing.

Life is far from idyllic in Swat, a lush valley once known as “the Switzerland of Pakistan.” Far from Islamabad, the capital, a local leader of the Taliban — the extremist Islamic group that controls parts of the country — uses radio broadcasts to coerce residents into adhering to the Taliban's strict edicts.

“Un-Islamic” activities that are now forbidden — on pain of a lashing or public execution ...

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