SOAS Research Online

A Free Database of the Latest Research by SOAS Academics and PhD Students

[skip to content]

Bonura, Carlo (2023) 'Religion and Civil Society in Southeast Asia.' In: Weiss, Meredith L. and Hansson, Eva, (eds.), Routledge Handbook of Civil and Uncivil Society in Southeast Asia. London: Routledge, pp. 260-274.

Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).

Download (761kB) | Preview


This chapter examines the complexities of religion and civil society in Southeast Asia. Given the importance of religion in the region, religious associations have played an important role in the formation of civil society and the organisation of challenges to powerful autocratic states. However, this is not the only way that religion affects civil society in Southeast Asia. It may provide grounds for support for autocratic regimes, through so-called uncivil religious groups. Religion has also become a target of prolonged state interventions that not only have shaped religious structures and practices but also have constrained the formation of religious civil society more generally. This chapter emphasises the normative dimensions that enable the conceptualisation of civil society in Southeast Asia. It explores how religion's normative resources can help shape public reasoning or foster contestation over key elements of civil society. Finally, it suggests that religious associations and intellectuals can contribute to the cultivation of new subjectivities and exclusions related to civil society.

Item Type: Book Chapters
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Politics & International Studies
Subjects: J Political Science > JQ Political institutions (Asia, Africa, Australia)
J Political Science
ISBN: 9780367422011
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 25 Feb 2023 09:21

Altmetric Data


Download activity - last 12 monthsShow export options
Downloads since deposit
6 month trend
6 month trend
Accesses by country - last 12 monthsShow export options
Accesses by referrer - last 12 monthsShow export options

Repository staff only

Edit Item Edit Item