This new textbook explores the societies and populations of the Middle East and North Africa. Presenting original chapters written by the world’s leading Middle East scholars, it analyzes the social fabric of the region’s varied countries to uncover the organizing structures, human vulnerabilities, and dynamic forces that shape everyday lives. The volume can be used in conjunction with The Government and Politics of the Middle East and North Africa textbook for a comprehensive overview of the region.
Whether used as a companion text or a standalone volume, this work provides the historical and cultural context necessary for understanding the peoples inhabiting Arab world, Israel, Turkey, and Iran, since the early twentieth century. Linking past to present to future, it also ascertains the ongoing developmental trajectories of these societies, including their overall stability and prosperity. The chapters are clearly structured, and contain insightful case studies, illustrative photographs, and visualized data. They also end with discussion questions and annotated bibliographies to help spark further research. Among the rich topics covered are the following:
- Rural life
- Civil society and personal identities
- Economic challenges, oil legacies, environmental harm
- Religious movements, women and gender, and youth politics.
The Societies of the Middle East and North Africa is written in an accessible way, prioritizing social, cultural and economic dimensions. As such this textbook provides a comprehensive introduction to the field and will be invaluable to students of Middle Eastern politics and society, as well as sociology, history, economics and anthropology.
Table of Contents
1. Bringing Society Back In Sean Yom
Part I. Societal Structures
2. Social Life, from Rural to Urban Rachel Bahn, Tariq Tell, and Rami Zurayk
3. Social Mobilization and Civil Society Vincent Durac
4. Identity, Its Power and Pull P.R. Kumaraswamy
Part II. Societal Vulnerabilities
5. Economic Development: Bread, Jobs, and Beyond Bessma Momani and Morgan MacInnes
6. Social and Cultural Legacies of Rentierism Hae Won Jeong
7. Environmental Change and Human Conflict Mohamad Behnassi
Part III. Societal Forces
8. Religion and Faith Ramazan Kilinc
9. Women and Gender Lindsay Benstead
10. The Youth Generation: Education and Transition Sean Yom
Sean Yom is Associate Professor of Political Science at Temple University and Senior Fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. He is a widely published expert on regimes and development in the Middle East and North Africa, and regularly travels to the region for research.