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Anatomy of Authoritarianism in the Arab Republics


  • Date Published: March 2016
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781107618312

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About the Authors
  • By examining the system of authoritarianism in eight Arab republics, Joseph Sassoon portrays life under these regimes and explores the mechanisms underpinning their resilience. How did the leadership in these countries create such enduring systems? What was the economic system that prolonged the regimes' longevity, but simultaneously led to their collapse? Why did these seemingly stable regimes begin to falter? This book seeks to answer these questions by utilizing the Iraqi archives and memoirs of those who were embedded in these republics: political leaders, ministers, generals, security agency chiefs, party members, and business people. Taking a thematic approach, the book begins in 1952 with the Egyptian Revolution and ends with the Arab uprisings of 2011. It seeks to deepen our understanding of the authoritarianism and coercive systems that prevailed in these countries and the difficult process of transition from authoritarianism that began after 2011.

    • Utilizes political memoirs to give a totally new insight into the authoritarian regimes discussed
    • Compares the basic tenets of these republics to show readers the similarities and differences between them
    • Provides insight into the functioning of the leadership in these countries
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Authoritarian regimes in the Arab world have been [extensively] analyzed individually and sometimes as a group. Joseph Sassoon pursues a new way to approach studying them. He does not offer a new theoretical or analytical approach but instead explores them through a new (or rarely used) source: personal memoirs. Anatomy of Authoritarianism in the Arab Republics takes a very inductive approach: he reads the memoirs of those who participated in (and sometimes were victims of) authoritarianism in the Arab republics and explores some commonalities that he finds … Sassoon's contribution here is not to highlight their importance but to observe their similarity…' Nathan J. Brown, The Middle East Journal

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    Product details

    • Date Published: March 2016
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781107618312
    • length: 342 pages
    • dimensions: 230 x 153 x 18 mm
    • weight: 0.47kg
    • contains: 1 map 2 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Political memoirs in the Arab republics
    2. Party and governance
    3. The military
    4. The role of security services in the Arab republics
    5. Economy and finance
    6. Leadership and the cult of personality
    7. Transition from authoritarianism

  • Author

    Joseph Sassoon, Georgetown University, Washington DC
    Joseph Sassoon is an Associate Professor and Al-Sabah Chair in Politics and Political Economy of the Arab World at Georgetown University, Washington DC. He has published extensively on the Middle East. His recent publications include Saddam Hussein's Ba'th Party: Inside an Authoritarian Regime (Cambridge, 2012) and The Iraqi Refugees: The New Crisis in the Middle East (2009).

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