1st Edition

Resistance, Power and Conceptions of Political Order in Islamist Organizations Comparing Hezbollah and Hamas

By Maren Koss Copyright 2018
    238 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    238 Pages 3 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book provides a comprehensive analysis of Islamist organizations' conceptions of political order based on a comparative case study of the Shiite Lebanese Hezbollah and the Sunni Palestinian Hamas. Connecting Islamism research, Critical Constructivist norm research, and resistance studies from the field of International Relations Theory, it demonstrates that resistance constitutes both organizations' core norm and is relevant for their conceptions of political order.

    Based on primary Arabic data the book illustrates that the core norm of resistance, deeply intertwined with both organizations' interactions towards power preservation and the specific political context they are engaged in, characterizes Hezbollah's and Hamas' respective conceptions of political order and explains the differences between them. In contrast to common perceptions presented in research, politics, and the media, the book shows that in the case of both Hezbollah and Hamas the religious orientation, i.e. Shiite and Sunni Islamist political thought, plays a secondary role only when it comes to explaining Islamist organizations' political orientation.

    Bringing new insights from cases that lie beyond the Western liberal world order into Critical Constructivist norm research and resistance studies, the book establishes a theoretical framework that enables scholars to comprehensively analyze Islamist organizations' political orientation in different cases without being caught in limited analytical categories. It will be of interest to students and scholars of International Relations Theory, Middle East Studies, and Global Governance.

    1. Introduction: Islamist Organizations’ Conceptions of Political Order, Resistance, and Power
    2. Bridging the Gap: Connecting Islamism Research and Critical Constructivism
      1. The Political Ideology of Islamism
      2. Critical Constructivist Norm Research and the Core Norm of Resistance
      3. Political Order and Power
      4. Conclusion and Research Proposition

    3. The Lebanese Hezbollah: Politics Serve Resistance
      1. Hezbollah’s Intellectual Background: Islamism, Resistance, and Political Order in the Lebanese Context
      2. Engaging in National Politics: Protecting the Resistance Ranks first
      3. Consolidating Resistance: Hezbollah in Domestic Contestation Processes
      4. Defending Resistance through Reconstructing its Meaning
      5. Conclusion: Hezbollah’s Conceptions of Political Order

    4. The Palestinian Hamas: Resistance, Governance, and Ambitions for Maintaining Power
      1. Hamas’ Intellectual Background: Islamism, Resistance, and Political Order in the Palestinian Context
      2. Hamas Comes to Power: New Visions of a Palestinian Political Order?
      3. Political Order in Gaza under the Authority of Hamas
      4. Morsi’s Rise to Power: Hamas Anticipates its Moment has Come
      5. Conclusion: Hamas’ Conceptions of Political Order

    5. Hezbollah and Hamas: The Interplay of Resistance, Power, and Political Order
      1. Hezbollah and Hamas’ Intellectual and Structural Background
      2. Conceptions of Political Order
      3. The Core Norm of Resistance
      4. Maintaining the Power Position
      5. Conclusion

    6. Ruling Islamist Organizations and the Connection of Norms, Power, and Conceptions of Political Order
      1. Ennahda in Power: Compromise and Power-Sharing in the Constitution-Making Process
      2. The Muslim Brotherhood: Hasty Constitution-Making without Compromise
      3. Ruling Islamist Organizations and the Explanatory Power of Critical Constructivist Norm Research

    7. Conclusion
      1. The Key Findings and their Scientific Contribution
      2. Implications for Future Research and Practitioners


    Maren Koss has completed a PhD at the GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies and the University of Hamburg. She is an International Relations Theory researcher and an area specialist on the Middle East and North Africa, especially on the following topics: Political Islam, Hezbollah, Hamas, Muslim Brotherhood, Lebanon, Palestinian Territories, and Syria.