2nd Edition

Middle East Politics and International Relations Crisis Zone

By Shahram Akbarzadeh Copyright 2023
    316 Pages
    by Routledge

    316 Pages
    by Routledge

    As featured on BookAuthority's list of best International Relations books to read in 2024.

    Continuing civil wars and humanitarian crises, coupled with a changing geopolitical dynamic, highlighted by increased Russian and Chinese presence in the Middle East, call for new thinking. What happens in the Middle East has major global repercussions.

    This second edition of the ground-breaking textbook Middle East Politics and International Relations: Crisis Zone provides a comprehensive overview of contemporary Middle East politics. The book traces the roots of recent events across the region’s modern history, enabling readers to appreciate both the significance of such events and the importance of history in influencing their outcomes. Structured chronologically, with updated stand-alone chapters containing history, context and contemporary analyses, this edition examines a series of interconnected themes and issues, including external intervention, political manifestations of Islam, the role of political authority, nationalism, self-determination and human rights.

    The book provides a valuable teaching tool, both in its content and structure. Students will gain a deeper understanding of a changed Middle East and the evolving role of states and non-state actors in the region.

    1. Historical Context

    2. The formation of the state of Israel

    3. The Arab-Israeli wars

    4. Palestinian politics: The failure of the ‘peace-process’

    5. Pan-Arabism and Islamism

    6. The Iranian Revolution and pan-Shi’ism

    7. Playground of the Superpowers 

    8. The US-led War on Terror  9. The Arab Uprising

    10. The Syrian War

    11. The Islamic State 

    12. Iran-US Relations and the Nuclear Deal 

    13. Shifting geopolitics in the Middle East


    Shahram Akbarzadeh is Research Professor of Middle East and Central Asian Politics and Convenor of Middle East Studies Forum (MESF) at the Alfred Deakin Institute for Citizenship and Globalization, Deakin University, Australia. He held the prestigious ARC Future Fellowship in 2013–2016.

    "The MENA region, or should we begin to call it the WANA (West Asia and North Africa) region in recognition of the region’s rapidly changing orientation, is a complex regional system whose fate and fortunes will continue to influence the workings of the international system for decades to come. So, understanding the fundamentals of WANA region, forces that shape it, countries that influence it, and its prospects, are key to understanding the ebb and flow of world politics as well. In his new edition, Prof. Akbarzadeh makes that job easy for us as he not only discusses the main forces and factors shaping this critical region, but provides a detailed guide for exploring the issues further and in more depth. If you thought his first edition was excellent, be ready to be pleasantly surprised by how much he has added here as well!"

    Anoush Ehteshami, Professor of International Relations, Nasser al-Sabah Chair and Director, HH Sheikh Nasser al-Sabah Research Programme, Director, Institute for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies, Durham University