Güneş Murat Tezcür, 2010. "Moderation Theory Revisited: The Case of Islamic Political Actors," 16(1): 69-88.
An influential political science literature argues that integration of radical political parties within the political system leads to their moderation. These parties trade off their ideological platforms for electoral viability and political legality. Radicals become moderates through strategic interests. In this article, I revisit this thesis and apply it to the Islamic political actors in Iran and Turkey by employing the comparative method of agreement. Three conclusions are reached. First, moderation helps explain the evolution of Islamists into Muslim reformers. Second, moderation is a double-edged sword, especially in regimes with strong un-democratic characteristics. Moderation of radicals may result in their domestication — a situation that does not contribute to democratic transition or consolidation. Finally, change in the ideologies of political elites is central in our understanding behavioural change. The data sources include ethnography, primary language sources and historical narratives.