Narrowing the Gap or Camouflaging the Divide: An Analysis of Mohammad Khatami's 'Dialogue of Civilisations'

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The year 2001 was named the Year of Dialogue Among Civilisations by the United Nations. That came in the wake of the former Iranian President, Mohammad Khatami, calling for a rapprochement between the Islamic and Western Cultures. This essay will attempt to outline the context and analyze the contents of the Iranian President's approach to the precept of civilizational dialogue. In so doing it will aim to assess the philosophical arguments advanced by him and will briefly refer to the political factors at the time, both domestically and internationally. In conclusion, it will be stated that notwithstanding the allure and the timeliness of the call, the absence of substantive dialogue may have been the prime factor responsible for the gradual fading away of the dialogue of civilizations.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: December 1, 2007

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