Governmentality and Crises of Representation, Knowledge, and Power in the Islamic Republic of Iran

Fozi, Navid
Since the contested presidential (re) election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2009, crises of representation, power, and knowledge have destabilized the Islamic Republic of Iran's governmentality notwithstanding a strong Weberian state. When many Iranians demanded a recount, the state rejected allegations of vote-rigging, purged Reformists from the state, cracked down on their supporters, elicited forced confessions, and staged show trials. This state-sponsored vigilantism that diminished the Republic's claim of representing the people caused a Reformist retreat from the streets as well as withdrawal from the parliamentary elections of March 2012. Such withdrawal, which threatened the vibrancy of the elections, added to the crises of representation. Moreover, it caused the Principalists to factionalize and radicalize, producing a crisis of power. In addition, divisions within the government and between the government and the populace resulted in the failure of the state to discern friends from foes, causing a crisis of knowledge. The subsequent presidential elections of Hassan Rouhani four years later in 2013, both in terms of the ways in which it unfolded as well as the outcome, was a confirmation and a way out of these challenges.


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Citation Formats
N. Fozi, “Governmentality and Crises of Representation, Knowledge, and Power in the Islamic Republic of Iran,” ASIAN POLITICS & POLICY, pp. 57–78, 2015, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: