Dr Harout Akdedian

Dr Harout Akdedian

After 2011, Syria witnessed the splintering of armed groups into a collection of private local militias, armed opposition groups, official armed forces, and other state-sponsored but semi-official paramilitary factions. This atrophy of the monopoly of violence coupled with the devolution of state functions to new actors indicate a drastic breakaway from the preexisting social order, especially at the local level. Local methods of public administration reveal a pattern of reconfiguration and utilization of religious organizational arrangements as a framework for local governance. Hence, the seminar focused on Islamic and non-Islamic groups in Syria that rely on the institutional domain of religion as an organizational framework after 2011. This newly emerging condition of religion as a dominant institutional domain was being compared to pre-2011 conditions to reveal a preexisting process of growing religious institutional autonomy vis-à-vis the state.