Middle East Studies

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Lost in Translation

New Paradigms for the Arab Spring

Uzi Rabi is Director of the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies. His numerous academic works include Yemen: Revolution, Civil War, and Unification (I.B Tauris, 2005). He provides consultation to the media and Israeli policymakers on contemporary Middle Eastern issues.

Abdelilah Bouasria, professor of international politics at the Ecole de Governance et d'Economie in Rabat, Morocco, has taught at George Mason University, the American University and the University of Montana. He is the author of Sufism and Politics in Morocco: Activism and Dissent (Routledge, 2015), and other books and articles..

Following the much-publicized self-immolation of Muhammad Bouazizi on 18 December 2010, a tempestuous succession of demonstrations, revolutions and civil wars swept the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. These events, collectively referred to as the “Arab Spring,” spread contagiously throughout the Middle East and the Maghreb. But instead of ushering in tidy transitions of power in autocratic regimes, the revolutions and uprisings ushered in a state of chaos, which greatly complicates the task of analysts and historians whose job it is to make sense of what has taken place. Will the Arab Spring bring much needed change that benefits the Arab peoples or will instability and turmoil keep the Middle East in a perpetual state of what some have termed the "Arab winter"?

Lost in Translation: New Paradigms for the Arab Spring is a contributory work by Middle East experts. As well as political and social analysis of the events and aftermath of the Arab Spring, the work provides a complex of paradigms (ranging from complexity studies to sport) which have thus far been overlooked by scholars and commentators in their assessments of Arab Spring manifestations. The result is unprecedented insights into the myriad forces that have inhibited genuine political and social transformations in the states of the Middle East and North Africa

Hardback ISBN: 978-1-84519-766-7
Hardback Price: £65.00 / $74.95
Release Date: May/June 2017
Page Extent / Format: 272 pp. / 229 x 152 mm
Illustrated: No


Foreword by Jean-François Mayer

Abdelilah Bouasria and Uzi Rabi

1. From Yesh to Ayin: The Arab Spring between Rresistance and resistivity                                             
Abdelilah BouasRia

2. Shadow Economy and Political Stability: A Blessing or a Curse?
Mohammad Reza Farzanegan and Ahmed Mohamed Badreldin

3. Defending Economic Privileges: The Role of Militaries in the Arab Spring
Elke Grawert

4. When the Ground Shakes: The Arab Spring and its Dynamics from the Lens of Complexity Science
Douglas Kiel and Imane Hijal Moghrabi

5. Indigene vs. Alien in the Arab Spring: A View Through the Lens of Invasion Biology     
Mathew Chew 

6. Climate Hazards, Food Security and the Arab Uprisings
Troy Sternberg, Franco Femia and Caitlin Werrell             

7. The Illusion of Democracy: Electoral Politics in Algeria over the Course of the Arab Spring
Mohammed Redha Bougherira and Youcef Bouandel

8. The Arab Spring’s Impact on the Persian Gulf Monarchies
Christopher Davidson

9. Middle Powers and the Arab Spring: The Case of Japanese Policy toward Syria
Yukiko Miyagi

10. Virtual Reality: New Media, the Arab Spring and the Democratic Revolution
Nir Boms

11. A Test of Democracy: Non-Muslim Minorities in Turkey
Duygu Atlas

12. Soccer and autocracy: The Case of Egypt
James M. Dorsey

13. After the Arab Spring: Economics and Demographics
Paul Rivlin

14. Dreams of the Arab Spring
Deirdre Barrett and Stanley Krippner

15. Future Scenarios for the States Affected by the Arab Spring: Insights from Futures Studies
Sohail Inayatullah

The Editors and Contributors

Through 15 essays, an international group of scholars of politics, economics, and other areas, as well as policymakers and activists, examines the Arab Spring from new perspectives, rather than the traditional paradigms of Islamism, democracy, and women’s rights. They consider how the Arab Spring was created, how the ecological sciences can offer insights into it, soccer as a place of resistance to autocratic regimes and political control, the economic dimensions of the Arab Spring, processes of change, future scenarios for states affected by the Arab Spring, electoral politics in Algeria, dream narratives in the Arab world during the Arab Spring, the impact on Persian Gulf monarchies, the role of social media, the equality of non-Muslim minorities in Turkey, the role of climate, and the role of the foreign policy of Japan toward Syria. Jean-Francois Mayer provides the foreword.

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