Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
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978-1-4422-3691-2 • Hardback • December 2015 • $104.00 • (£80.00)
978-1-4422-3692-9 • Paperback • December 2015 • $46.00 • (£35.00)
978-1-4422-3693-6 • eBook • December 2015 • $43.50 • (£33.00)
Bruce Maddy-Weitzman is a professor in the Department of Middle Eastern & African History, and senior research fellow at the Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies, Tel Aviv University.
AcknowledgmentsIntroductionPart One: The Emergence of Arab Nationalism: One Nation, Many StatesChapter One: Arab Nationalism: Modest Beginnings. Chapter Two: World War I and its aftermath: The Arab Revolt and Unrealized Expectations
Chapter Three: State-Building and Nation-Building in Adverse Circumstances
Chapter Four: The Dynastic Era – Upheaval, Revolution and Transition (1945-54)
Chapter Five: The Radical Heyday (1955-67)
Part Two: From Order to Disorder: The Triumph and Decline of Arab States Chapter Six: After the June 1967 Debacle: Picking Up the Pieces (1967-70)
Chapter Seven: Diminished Leadership: Egypt and the Arab Order in the Sadat-Mubarak Era (1970-2010)
Chapter Eight: Failed Aspirations, Failed State: Iraq Under Saddam, and Beyond (1968-2010)
Chapter Nine: Syria Under the Asad Dynasty: From Weak State to Aspiring Regional Power (1970-2010)
Chapter Ten: Symbol vs. Substance: The Palestinian Movement in the Arab Firmament Since 1967
Chapter Eleven: The Arab Spring: Disorder and Disintegration
Maddy-Weitzman seeks to synthesize the complex history of the contemporary Arab Middle East, focusing on Arab identity and Arab nationalism. Using mostly English-language sources, the author argues that Arab identity evolved out of ‘Arabism,’ or Arabs’ consciousness of being distinct from the Ottomans ruling them, before being articulated into a more structured vision of a fractured nation under the dominion of Western powers that needed to reassemble its fragments into an independent union. The constantly thwarted ‘dream’ of unity is seen as the bedrock of ‘Arab’ politics, the book's object. Wars with Israel loom large, as each defeat pointed to the hollowness of the assumed unity project. The emphasis on ‘Arab’ nationalism as an explanatory concept obscures the role played by imperialism (referred to neutrally as ‘domination’), either in the ‘weakness’ of Arab states the author notes, or Western powers’ apparent fear of Arab unity. The book's tone is restrained, the style is clear, and where details are given, some sections are informative.
— Choice Reviews
[The book] both reprises and provides many helpful views of things one might well have forgotten.
— Asian Affairs
Bruce Maddy-Weitzman’s extraordinary book could not have come at a better time. We are now 100 years removed from the Arab Revolt, a defining event in shaping the Middle East regional order of the last century. The book succeeds in helping us digest the vast scope of changes in the region over that time, particularly the rise and fall of Arab nationalism.
— Joel Migdal, Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington, Seattle
• Provides a comprehensive analytical overview of a century of Arab regional politics
• Focuses on the multiple meanings and salience of Arab identity, the emergence of various Arab entities, and the competition among them over interests and resources
• Combines the history of the Arab political systems in modern times with an analysis of the events referred to as the “Arab Spring”