The fourth edition of this dynamic and popular text provides a comprehensive introduction to contemporary politics in the Middle East. Fully revised and updated throughout, it features a new chapter on the Arab Spring and its aftermath, plus a wide range of vibrant case studies, data, questions for class discussion and suggestions for further reading.
Purposefully employing a clear thematic structure, the book begins by introducing key concepts and contentious debates before outlining the impact of colonialism, and the rise and relevance of Arab nationalism in the region. Major political issues affecting the Middle East are then explored in full. These include political economy, conflict, political Islam, gender, the regional democracy deficit, and ethnicity and minorities. The book also examines the role of key foreign actors, such as the USA, Russia and the EU, and concludes with an in-depth analysis of the Arab uprisings and their impact in an era of uncertainty.
Beverley Milton-Edwards is Professor of Politics at Queen's University Belfast and Senior Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Doha Center.
Preface to the Fourth Edition INTRODUCTION The Muddle East? Who invented the Middle East? Orientalism - the enduring debate State-types: making sense of multiplicity Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 1. COLONIAL RULE: SHAPING THE DESTINY OF A REGION Introduction Merchants and Missionaries World War 1 and the death of the Ottoman Empire 1918 and after: mandates, protectorates and colonial power Inter-war European decline Sunset Empire Case Study: Egypt - Gateway to riches Case Study: The Palestine Debacle Case Study: Algeria - a colony or province outre mer? Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 2. NATIONALISM: THE QUEST FOR IDENTITY AND POWER Introduction Nationalism as theory turned into practice The birth pangs of Arab nationalism New Identities and hopes The first Arab revolt: the Arab princes at the helm of British imperial ambition Taking state power Unification nationalism: the United Arab Republic and beyond Case Study: Nationalism defined by a man: Nasserism Case Study: Ba thism - the Arab Socialist future unveiled Case Study: Stateless nation: The Kurds Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 3. A VERY POLITICAL ECONOMY Introduction Regional wealth and extremes of inequality Evolution of oil-based economies Sheikhdoms and petro-power Rentier futures, profit in decline? Labour mobility and employment Case Study: Saudi Arabia: Visio 2030 or bust Case Study: Egypt: Too big to fail or succeed Case Study: Collapsing globalization and its regional consequences Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 4. CONFLICT AND LACK OF PEACE Introduction The bigger battle: Arab-Israeli hostility Killing dreams: the Israeli-Palestinian dimension East against West in the Suez crisis Arab versus Arab The Lion and the Peacock: Arab-Iranian relations Sectarian Politics Case Study: Egypt and Israel: This is what peace looks like Case Study: Iraq: Enduring Conflict Case Study: Al Qaeda the recurrent threat Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 5. PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE POLITICS: ISLAM Introduction Islam and Politics Thoroughly modern Muslims Muslim Brotherhood Fervour Arab Spring and Islamist Autumn Case Study: The Islamic Republic of Iran Case Study: ISIS - the case of the so-called Islamic state Case Study: Palestinian Islamists - Hamas Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 6. THE EPHEMERALS OF DEMOCRACY IN THE MIDDLE EAST Introduction Clash of civilizations Democracy or liberalization? Socio-economic indicators Democracy and civil society Islamism and democracy - an oxymoron? The Arab Spring and democracy Case Study: Jordan - a facade democracy Case Study: Moroccan parse Case Study: All Hopes in Tunisia Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 7. Women: The invisible population Introduction The role of women in nationalist movements Identity and Independence Women and Islam Subjugation Feminism and gender discourses Case Study: Palestinian women in the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip Case Study: From beyond the veil - Iran since the revolution Case Study: Turkey, the state of women Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 8. ENDANGERED SPECIES: ETHNICITY AND MINORITIES Introduction Defining ethnicity Minority status The state and ethnicity Modernity in the post-modern age Ethno-national and religious battles Conflict management and regulation Case Study: Lost within the Jewish state: Israel s Arabs. Case Study: All the President s Men The Alawites of Syria Case Study: Fear on a Mountain: Yazidis Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 9. THEM AND US: THE UNITED STATES, EU AND RUSSIA IN THE MIDDLE EAST Introduction National Interest Relations and rivalries Europe, the EU and the Middle East The Bear awakens Russia and the Middle East Case Study: America and Israel: the really special relationship Case Study: America and Saudi Arabia: oil on troubled waters Case Study: Russia and Syria: the embrace Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion 10. THE ARAB SPRING AND THE NEW ERA OF UNCERTAINTY Introduction Underlying factors Winds of Change Teenage Kicks: Youth and the Arab Spring Unfolding spectacle of political change Authoritarian resilience Uncertain Future Case Study: Libya fracturing Case Study: Egypt s children of the revolution Case Study: Yemen from Hope to War Recommended Reading Questions for Discussion References Index