Democratic Transition in the Middle East


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Unmaking Power

The edited volume “Democratic Transition in the Middle East: Unmaking Power” was recently published by Routledge. Edited by Heinrich Boell Foundation, the volume offers seven empirical case studies discussing the democratic void in power resulting from the popular uprisings nad revolts across the Arab Middle East. It seeks to unpack the state of the democratic void in three interrelated fields: democracy, legitimacy and social relations. In doing so, the conventional treatment of democratization as a linear, formal, systemic and systematic process is challenged and the power politics of democratic transition reassessed. Through a close examination of case studies focusing on Yemen, Syria, Egypt, Bahrain, Iraq and Lebanon, this collection introduces the reader to indigenous narratives on how power is wrested and negotiated from the democratization models as well as those seeking to understand the reshaping of the Arab Middle East in the wake of recent unrest.

AnchorAbout the Editors

Larbi Sadiki is a senior lecturer in Middle East Politics at the University of Exeter and Director of its MA program. His research focuses on bottom-up and non-institutionalized discourses and struggles for democracy in the Arab world, Arabo-Islamic political thought, Islamist movements and civil society. He is a regular commentator on the English website of Al-Jazeera. His recent book publications include Rethinking Arab Democratization: Elections without Democracy (2009) and The Search for Arab Democracy: Discourses and Counter-Discourses (2004).

Heiko Wimmen is Doctoral Candidate at Freie Universitat Berlin and Fellow at the H=German Institute for International and Security Studies in Berlin.

Layla Al-Zubaidi was director of the Heinrich Böll Foundation’s Middle East Office in Beirut from 2006 to 2012 and now heads the Southern Africa Office in Cape Town. She authored the first version of this report, published in 2004.

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