The Iranian Constitution: A Compilation of Irreconcilable Articles
Journal of Political Science and International Relations
Volume 2, Issue 4, December 2019, Pages: 93-100
Received: Sep. 11, 2019; Accepted: Oct. 24, 2019; Published: Dec. 17, 2019
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Sara Zalzar, Department of Political Science, Azad University, Chaloos Campus, Chaloos, Iran
Sadegh Zibakalam, Department of Political Science, School of Law & Political Science, Tehran University, Tehran, Iran
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The current Iranian constitution is the product of two irreconcilable and at times contradictory perspectives, i.e., a merger of the traditional guidelines from Shiite Islam (or Sharia law) with some principles similar in spirit to the French constitution. The purpose of this literature review is to objectively examine the contents of the Iranian constitution and elaborate on the similarities and differences compared with the principles enshrined in the French constitution that made France a major cradle of Western democracy. Despite the limited analytical literature available on the subject, the authors selected the relevant articles and books to critically compare and contrast the language and spirit of the Iranian constitution versus its French counterpart. The Iranian constitution is a reflection of the Islamic theocracy and fundamentalism, combined with democratic-appearing but irreconcilable articles to govern the nation’s affairs by three branches of independent yet controlled government. The constitution provides the freedom to obey the absolute and unaccountable Leader, and the 177 articles that are claimed to be sufficient for prosperity in this world and the eternal life after. The outcome of the Iranian constitution, which was never tested in a real society before its ideals were put into practice in Iran, suggest that the Islamic guidelines are not reconcilable for the most part with those of the modern democracies as a method of governance in the 21st century.
Constitution, Democracy vs Theocracy, Sharia Law, Globalization, Fundamentalism, Separation of Powers
To cite this article
Sara Zalzar, Sadegh Zibakalam, The Iranian Constitution: A Compilation of Irreconcilable Articles, Journal of Political Science and International Relations. Vol. 2, No. 4, 2019, pp. 93-100. doi: 10.11648/j.jpsir.20190204.13
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This article is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License ( which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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