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HIS 481: The Modern Middle East Since 1800: Searching for Books
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Framing economic and political reform in the Middle East, this book explores the interplay between the Egyptian state, the Muslim Brotherhood and the politics of succession. Egypt has in recent years experienced a rise in political activism driven by increasing internal demands for reform and change, impacting upon its economic and political strategy. Two key issues have been central to this: the Muslim Brotherhood, in its evolution from a spiritual to a political movement, and the politics of succession, which has seen the grooming of Gamal Mubarak, son of President Hosni Mubarak, to usher forward the inheritance of power in Egypt. This book enables a greater understanding of the dynamics of authoritarianism and democratisation, and the challenges and dilemmas which any future Egyptian reform process will face in the context of succession to Hosni Mubarak.
The rise of political Islam has provoked considerable debate about the compatibility of democracy, tolerance, and pluralism with the Islamist position. As The Challenge of Political Islam reveals, Egyptian Islamists today are more integrated into the political arena than ever, and are voicing a broad spectrum of positions, including a vision of Islamic citizenship more inclusive of non-Muslims. Based on Islamist writings, political tracts, and interviews with Islamists--including members of Egypt's Muslim Brotherhood and other important contemporary thinkers--this book looks closely at how modern, politically-oriented Egyptian Islamists perceive non-Muslims in an Islamic state and how non-Muslims respond. Clarifying the movement's aims, this work uncovers how Islamists have responded to the pressures of modernity, the degree to which the movement has been influenced by both a historical Islamic framework and Western modes of political thinking, and the necessity to reconsider the notion that secularism is a precondition for toleration.
From the start of the U.S. war in Afghanistan in 2001 to the withdrawal of U.S. troops in 2014, Pakistan's military cooperation was critical to the United States. Yet Pakistani politics remain a source of anxiety for American policymakers. Despite some progress toward democratic consolidation over the last ten years, Pakistan's military still asserts power over the country's elected government. Pakistan's western regions remain largely ungoverned and home to the last remnants of al-Qaeda's original leadership as well as multiple militant groups that have declared war on the Pakistani state. The country's economy is in shambles, and continuing tensions with India endanger efforts to bring a durable peace to a region haunted by the distant threat of nuclear war.
This volume provides an unparalleled and timely look at political, social, economic, and ideological dynamics in contemporary Iran. Through chapters on social welfare and privatization, university education, the role and authority of the Supreme Leader, the rule of law, the evolving electoral system, and the intense debate over human rights within and outside the regime, the contributors offer a comprehensive overview of Iranian politics. Their case studies reveal a society whose multiple vectors of contestation, negotiation, and competition are creating possibilities for transformation that are yet to be realized but whose outcome will affect the Islamic Republic, the region, and relations with the United States.
After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, a stunned public asked: How could this happen? Why did the attackers do what they did? What did they hope to accomplish? This wasn't the first battle in a conflict that has included bombings of U.S.embassies and planes, the Iran hostage crisis, and kidnappings or shootings of American citizens. This unique volume sets out to answer these questions using the unfiltered words of the terrorists themselves. Over many decades, radical forces in the Middle East have changed and evolved, yet theirbasic outlook and anti-Western views have remained remarkably consistent. Barry Rubin and Judith Colp Rubin have assembled nearly one hundred key documents, charting the evolution of radical Middle East movements, their anti-Americanism, and Western policy response. The buildup to the battle betweena world superpower and Middle East revolutionaries is brought dramatically to life. Among the documents included are the charters of such organizations as Hizballah, Hamas, and World Islamic Front; speeches by Syrian president Hafiz al-Asad and Iraqi president Saddam Hussein; al-Qa'ida recruitmentmaterials; and terrorist training manuals. The book also shows and analyzes the often conflicting and deeply conflicted responses to September 11 by journalists, clerics, and activists in the Arab world. Supplemented by an annotated chronology, a glossary of terms, and sections that put eachselection in context, this comprehensive reference serves not only as essential historical background to the ongoing aftermath of the September 11 attacks, but more generally as an invaluable framework for understanding a long-term, continuing conflict that has caused many crises for the UnitedStates.
As a civil war shatters a country and consumes its people, historian Christian C. Sahner offers a poignant account of Syria, where the past profoundly shapes its dreadful present. Among the Ruins blends history, memoir and reportage, drawing on the author's extensive knowledge of Syria inancient, medieval, and modern times, as well as his experiences living in the Levant on the eve of the war and in the midst of the "Arab Spring". These plotlines converge in a rich narrative of a country in constant flux - a place renewed by the very shifts that, in the near term, are proving sodestructive.Sahner focuses on five themes of interest to anyone intrigued and dismayed by Syria's fragmentation since 2011: the role of Christianity in society; the arrival of Islam; the rise of sectarianism and competing minorities; the emergence of the Ba'ath Party; and the current pitiless civil war.Among the Ruins is a brisk and illuminating read, an accessible introduction to a country with an enormously rich past and a tragic present. For anyone seeking to understand Syria, this book should be their starting point.
The Intifada of 2000-2001 has demonstrated the end of an era of diplomacy in the Arab-Israeli conflict. The style of peacemaking of the Olso Accords has been called into question by the facts on the ground. Elite forms of peacemaking that do not embrace the basic needs of average people on allsides are bound to fail.The complete neglect of deeper cultural and religious systems in the peace process is now apparent, as is the role that this neglect has played in the failure of the process. Building on his earlier book, Between Eden and Armageddon, Gopin provides a detailed blueprint of how the religioustraditions in question can become a principal asset in the search for peace and justice. He demonstrates how religious people can be the critical missing link in peacemaking, and how the incorporation of their values and symbols can unleash a new dynamic that directly addresses basic issues ofethics, justice, and peace.Gopin's analysis of the theoretical, theological, and political planes shows us what has been achieved thus far, as well as what must be done next in order to ensure effective final settlement negotiations and secure, sovereign, democratic countries for both peoples.