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On the Arab Revolts and the Iranian Revolution: Power and Resistance Today

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Author: Arshin Adib-Moghaddam

Published: 10-10-2013
Format: Hardback
Edition: 1st
Extent: 264
ISBN: 9781472511898
Imprint: Bloomsbury Academic
Series: Suspensions: Contemporary Middle Eastern and Islamicate Thought

Book Description

On the Arab Revolts and the Iranian Revolution: Power and Resistance Today is the first comparative analysis of two central political events that have altered our world forever: the Arab uprisings which started in Tunisia, and the Iranian revolution in 1979. Adib-Moghaddam demonstrates how contemporary forms of protest are changing our understanding about the way power and resistance function. In a theoretical tour de force which is substantiated with a range of primary material, he argues that acts of protest in Tehran to Cairo can be entirely linked to the same act in New York, London, Madrid and Athens. Breaking through the east/west, north/south divide, Adib-Moghaddam shows how the Arab revolts promise to shift the discourse away from the idea that Arabs and Muslims are peculiar, that "Middle Eastern Studies" cannot be linked to political theory, that the dynamics of rebellion "there" are fundamentally different from the politics of revolt "here". Adib-Moghaddam argues that the dialectics of power and resistance are truly universal and that they are unfolding within a globalised political context that is increasingly interconnected. In order to illuminate this argument theoretically, the study is organised around conceptual terms that feed into forms of power and resistance, such as revolution, radicalism, dissent, knowledge, neighbour and reform. These terms and concepts are discussed and deconstructed via an empirical discussion of pivotal events beyond the non-western world, demonstrating that for a long time, and without realising it, we have been living in the end times of unitary categories such as "west" and "east."

Table Of Contents

Introduction
1. Our Revolting Neighbours
2. Between Power and Resistance in Praxis
3. Between Power and Resistance in Theory
4. How the (Sub)altern Resist: A Dialogue with Foucault and Said
5. What is Radicalism? Lessons from Contemporary Iranian History
6. Discourse and Power: The Paradoxical Case of the Iranian-American Conjunction
7. Neighbourhood Policies: Muqawamah or the Meaning of Power and Resistance Today
Notes
Bibliography
Index

Reviews

“Amid the plethora of recent books on the 2011 Arab uprisings, Adib-Moghaddam has written a compelling and original work on the global interconnectedness of power and resistance. This is a book that is both empirically and theoretically rich, placing the revolutions of Iran in 1978-79 and the Arab world in 2011 in a larger, global context. It should be essential reading for anyone interested in the serious study of contemporary Middle Eastern politics, revolutions, and social movements.” –  Mehran Kamrava, author of "The Modern Middle East: A Political History since the First World War".

“The unfolding Arab revolutions have challenged all our historical and theoretical frames of references and refuse to be assimilated backward into our inherited regimes of knowledge in any number of disciplines but most emphatically in the categorically overcome field of "Middle Eastern Studies." In his On the Arab Revolts and the Iranian Revolution: Power and Resistance Today, Arshin Adib-Moghaddam has brought his formidable intellectual capacities to provide a groundbreaking comparative assessment of these revolutions in such a solid and provocative way that no future study can ignore or soon surpass.” –  Hamid Dabashi, author of "Arab Spring: The End of Postcolonialism" (2011).

SOAS scholar’s work honoured by leading Middle East and North Africa publication

Dr. Arshin Adib-Moghaddam, Reader in Comparative Politics and International Relations at SOAS, University of London has been described as a foremost thinker and commentator on the Middle East and Muslim world by online publication Muftah.

Muftah launched in May 2010 to provide incisive analysis on the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) that eschewed Western obsessions with terrorism, oil, and Islamism and, instead, highlighted issues and concerns that mattered to the region’s people.

The publication described Dr Adib-Moghaddam as one of few academics or intellectuals who can boast of his credentials, expertise, and prolific scholarship. It adds that his work has earned him an internationally renowned reputation as one of the foremost thinkers and commentators on the Middle East and Muslim world, its relationship with the West, US foreign policy toward these regions, Islamophobia, Orientalism, critical and postcolonial theory, and the myth of the clash of civilizations.

The scholar’s latest book, On the Arab Revolts and the Iranian Revolution: Power and Resistance Today, is the first comparative analysis of two central political events that have altered our world forever: the Arab uprisings which started in Tunisia, and the Iranian revolution in 1979.  Dr. Adib-Moghaddam demonstrates how contemporary forms of protest are changing our understanding about the way power and resistance function.

In the past week alone Dr. Adib-Moghaddam's commentary and interviews were published in Arabic and English by Al Jazeera's Centre for Studies and in Persian by Mehr News Agency in Tehran.

About the Author

Arshin Adib-Moghaddam is Reader in Comparative Politics and International Relations at SOAS, University of London and Chair of the Centre for Iranian Studies at the London Middle East Institute. Educated at the Universities of Hamburg, American (Washington DC) and Cambridge, where he received his MPhil and PhD as a multiple scholarship student, he was the first Jarvis Doctorow Fellow in International Relations and Peace Studies at St. Edmund Hall and the Department of Politics and International Relations, University of Oxford.

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