This book provides a comprehensive analysis of the complexities of change and continuity in West Asia, its society, religion and politics. An overview of the region’s political, social and economic characteristics brought into sharper relief with the on-going turmoil in the region constitutes the introduction of the book. While the subsequent two chapters, along with the introductory text, constitute the thematic overview and orientation of the book, the different chapters dedicated to specific countries explore the recent transformative developments in the region. These chapters chart the emergence of Islamist and post Islamist politics in Iran and Lebanon, elaborate upon the prevailing civil war conditions in Iraq, Syria, Yemen and Libya, examine the impact of the Arab uprisings that began in 2011 on Egypt, Jordan and the Arab Gulf countries, and explore the intricate interplay between Islam and democracy in the present-day politics of Turkey. While highlighting politics, the texts of the chapters also delve into history, religion and foreign policy. This book will be as useful for the students of West Asian affairs as it will be for policymakers and any interested reader.
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1. Introduction: Change and Continuity in West Asia 2. Islamism and Democracy in the Arab World Post-Arab Spring 3. The Sunni-Shia Split: Changing Faces of Religious Schism and its Modern Political Implications for the Arab World 4. Islamism and Post-Islamism in Iran 5. Hizbullah’s Islamist and Post-Islamist Politics 6. Sectarianism in Iraq Post-2003 and the Challenge of ISIS 7. Syria: From Uprising to Jihad 8. The New Cold War in Syria 9. Impact of the Arab Spring on Jordan 10. The Arab Uprisings: Prospects and Challenges for the Persian Gulf Countries 11. King is Dead, Long Live the King: The Royal Succession in Saudi Arabia 12. Turbulence in Yemen and the Changing Geopolitics in the Region 13. The Changing Face of Islamism in Turkey 14. Democracy in Turkish Foreign Policy towards the Middle East in the AK Party Era 15. Contesting the Arab Revolts: The ‘New’ Egypt 16. Tribal Conflict and Political Stability in Libya