The Historical Dictionary of Arab and Islamic Organizations focuses on international and regional organizations primarily in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. With more than 300 cross-referenced entries, this volume includes both major and minor organizations. While the emphasis is on intergovernmental institutions, it also covers non-governmental organizations, key countries, movements, and prominent figures in the Arab and Islamic world. Like other dictionaries of this type, it includes an introductory essay, chronology of major events, and a select bibliography for further reading. It provides a solid starting point for students, researchers, and anyone wanting to know more about the subject.
Sarah Tenney is an Associate Professor of Political Science at The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina in Charleston, South Carolina. She is the author of Historical Dictionary of the International Monetary Fund and Historical Dictionary of the World Bank.
Since its first edition, there have been many significant changes to this work, including a new author and complete overhaul of the entries, and even a new publisher. Notably, the 300-plus topics covered are now focused almost exclusively on the organizations themselves with limited profiles of people, while the previous edition highlighted many more individuals. Furthermore, the organizations included in the new edition are more varied than in the earlier publication. This is probably due to the major geopolitical events of the past two decades, such as the 9/11 attacks, the Arab Spring, and the various wars and civil wars that have afflicted the Middle East, as well as the proliferation of new organizations responding to the changing conditions. As well, many organizations covered in 2001 are not retained here, some presumably having lost significance in the interim. The work under review primarily focuses on countries of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA); a few exceptions are also included, such as Afghanistan. The dictionary covers a selection of both major and minor intergovernmental organizations and NGOs working in the region. In view of the many new organizations covered in this book and the exclusion of many from the first edition, libraries should retain both editions. Recommended.