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Title: Challenging Dominant Parties' Issue Ownership: A Study of the Religious Parties the BJP and the PAS
Keywords: Religious parties, dominant parties, elections, electoral campaigns, issues, issue ownership
Issue Date: 23-Aug-2013
Source: MUHAMAD YUSRI BIN MOHAMED SUPIYAN (2013-08-23). Challenging Dominant Parties' Issue Ownership: A Study of the Religious Parties the BJP and the PAS. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: In recent decades religion has undergone a renaissance in the arena of politics, and the rise of religious political parties is a clear manifestation of the increased religionisation of politics. Religious parties have also come to prominence in polities where dominant political parties are experiencing a decline. However, their levels of success at the ballot box have varied greatly in spite of such favourable conditions. Whilst some religious parties have gone on to win elections and form the government, others have floundered at the polls. This thesis argues that whether the religious party is able to come to governmental power in functioning democracies depends on its ability to wrest away issue ownership over `national-temporal? issues of the day from the dominant party in decline. Relying on an extensive analysis of newspaper reports during the periods of electoral campaigning, this thesis finds that in 1998 the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) managed to wrest away the ownership over the issue of economic reforms from the Congress Party of India and consequently win the elections, whereas in 2008 the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) largely failed to wrest away the ownership over the issue of the economy from the United Malays National Organisation-led coalition government. The key element in wresting away issue ownership lies in the religious party?s ability to recast the discursive debate over an issue in a manner such that it favours the party itself while simultaneously disadvantaging the dominant party.
Appears in Collections:Master's Theses (Open)

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