Russell Powell

Partnering North American Jesuit Universities: The School of Law, Seattle University

Title and Précis:

Religious Movements and Parties in Turkey and Their Implications for the Relationship between Islam, Catholicism, and Democracy

     This project will explore the question of whether political parties with deeply held religious ideologies can integrate themselves into liberal democracy. The rise of the Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP), its electoral victories, and the Gülen movement will be examined in particular depth. This study of the borders of religion and the state in Muslim democracy will inform Catholic experiences as well. It will make use of empirical and statistical data, but will remain for the most part an interdisciplinary and theoretical analysis.


     Professor Powell was an Associate Attorney with Coudert Brothers from 1996-1998 and an Associate Attorney at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati before teaching at the University of Jordan and at Loyola University Chicago. He taught as a Visiting Professor of Law at Santa Clara University School of Law from 2003-2005. His areas of expertise are business law (especially corporate law), jurisprudence (with particular interests in Catholic social thought and Islamic legal theory), and comparative law. Professor Powell reads and speaks a number of languages including Turkish and Farsi.