Routledge Handbook of Persian Gulf Politics  book cover
1st Edition

Routledge Handbook of Persian Gulf Politics

Edited By

Mehran Kamrava

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after February 1, 2022
ISBN 9780367489762
February 1, 2022 Forthcoming by Routledge
564 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations

USD $52.95

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Book Description

The Routledge Handbook of Persian Gulf Politics provides a comprehensive and up-to-date analysis of Persian Gulf politics, history, economics, and society.

The volume begins its examination of Ottoman rule in the Arabian Peninsula, exploring other dimensions of the region’s history up until and after independence in the 1960s and 1970s. Featuring scholars from a range of disciplines, the book demonstrates how the Persian Gulf’s current, complex politics is a product of interwoven dynamics rooted in historical developments and memories, profound social, cultural, and economic changes underway since the 1980s and the 1990s, and inter-state and international relations among both regional actors and between them and the rest of the world. The book comprises a total of 36 individual chapters divided into the following six sections:

  • Historical Context
  • Society and Culture
  • Economic Development
  • Domestic Politics
  • Regional Security Dynamics
  • The Persian Gulf and the World

Examining the Persian Gulf’s increasing importance in regional politics, diplomacy, economics, and security issues, the volume is a valuable resource for scholars, students, and policy makers interested in political science, history, Gulf studies, and the Middle East.

Table of Contents


  1. Politics in Persian Gulf: An Overview
  2. Mehran Kamrava

    Part I. Historical Context

  3. The Ottomans in the Arabian Peninsula
  4. Aiza Khan

  5. The Persian Gulf in the Pre-Protectorate Period: 1790–1853
  6. Allen Fromherz

  7. Sa‘udi Arabia and the 1744 Alliance between the al-Sa‘ud and the al-Shaykh: A Legitimizing and Enduring Union
  8. Joseph Kéchichian

  9. Britain’s Presence in the Persian Gulf, 1617–2019
  10. W. Taylor Fain

  11. The States of the Persian Gulf: From Protectorates to Independent Countries
  12. Lucy M. Abbott

    Part II. Society and Culture

  13. Modernity and the Arab Gulf States: The Politics of Heritage, Memory, and Forgetting
  14. Farah Al-Nakib

  15. Evolving Family Patterns in the Arabian Peninsula
  16. Amira Sonbol

  17. Migrant Urbanism in Gulf Cities: A Reality without Vision?
  18. Florian Wiedmann

  19. Social Division in Iraq: Ahl al-Shiqāq wa-l-Nifāq?
  20. Fanar Haddad

  21. Sectarianism in the Gulf Monarchies: Regional and Domestic Factors of Sunni-Shi‘a Tensions
  22. Laurence Louër

  23. Redefining Women’s Roles in the Gulf’s Oil Monarchies
  24. Mandana E. Limbert

  25. Oil for Art’s Sake: Art and Culture in the GCC
  26. Suzi Mirgani

    Part III. Economic Development

  27. Rentier Political Economy in the Oil Monarchies
  28. Jessie Moritz

  29. Global Energy Markets and the Persian Gulf
  30. Li-Chen Sim

  31. The Emergence and Spread of the "Dubai Model" in the GCC Countries

Martin Hvidt

  1. Labor Migration in the Persian Gulf
  2. Zahra Babar

  3. Revisiting the Gulf’s Divided Labor Markets
  4. Michael Ewers and Ryan Dicce

  5. Working Women in the Oil Monarchies
  6. Nawra Al Lawati and Gail J. Buttorff

    Part IV. Domestic Politics

  7. Nationalism in Iran
  8. Hamid Ahmadi

  9. Nationalism in the Persian Gulf’s Oil Monarchies
  10. Jill Crystal

  11. Charismatic Authority in a Hybrid State: Reading Max Weber and Beyond in Postrevolutionary Iran
  12. Mojtaba Mahdavi

  13. Political Islam in the Arabian Peninsula
  14. Courtney Freer

  15. Parliamentary Politics in Kuwait
  16. Clemens Chay

  17. Political Absolutism in the Gulf Monarchies
  18. Steven Wright

  19. Royal Succession in Saudi Arabia: The Rise of Mohammad bin Salman
  20. Stig Stenslie

    Part V. Regional Security Dynamics

  21. Security in the Persian Gulf
  22. Nader Entessar

  23. Security Dilemmas and Conflict Spirals in the Persian Gulf
  24. Fred H. Lawson

  25. Between Anarchy and Arms Race: A Security Dilemma in the Persian Gulf
  26. Islam Hassan

  27. The Rise and Decline of the Gulf Cooperation Council
  28. Kristian Coates Ulrichsen

  29. Saudi-Iranian Relations: Between Identity, Ideology, and Interest
  30. Massaab Al-Aloosy

  31. The Armed Forces in Post-Revolutionary Iran
  32. Saeid Golkar

    Part VI. The Persian Gulf & the World

  33. The United States and the Persian Gulf: The Art of Lasting in Stormy Waters
  34. Houchang Hassan-Yari

  35. The United States and Iran: Transcending No-Man’s-Land
  36. Ghoncheh Tazmini

  37. Iran-U.S. Relations: Challenges and Opportunities
  38. Gawdat Bahgat

  39. China and the Persian Gulf: Hedging Under the U.S. Umbrella

Jonathan Fulton

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Mehran Kamrava is Professor of Government at Georgetown University in Qatar. His books include A Concise History of Revolution (2020), Troubled Waters: Insecurity in the Persian Gulf (2018), Inside the Arab State (2018), The Impossibility of Palestine: History, Geography, and the Road Ahead (2016), and Qatar: Small State, Big Politics (2015).


‘In this magisterial volume, Mehran Kamrava brings together some of the world’s foremost experts to shed light on one of the most important – yet widely misunderstood – regions of the world. Interrogating dislocations in political, economic, social, geopolitical and cultural realms, this is required reading for anyone desiring a better understanding of the Persian Gulf.’ — Simon Mabon, Director of the Richardson Institute, Lancaster University, UK 

‘Mehran Kamrava has assembled a sterling list of authors, a mix of veteran analysts and younger academics who are fresh from the field. The volume helps to define the study of the politics of the Persian Gulf region for some time.’ — F. Gregory Gause, III, Head of International Affairs Department, The Bush School, Texas A&M University, USA