Islam and Democracy: Perspectives on the Arab Spring

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9781443847148: Islam and Democracy: Perspectives on the Arab Spring

The electoral success of Islamist parties in the MENA in the wake of the Arab Spring has been welcomed by their Islamist proponents that were under pressure of their former regimes. However, their success has been met with concerns and fears by secularists and religious minorities of these countries. The question of whether this Arab Islamic awakening takes a step forward or backward for human rights and democracy came to the agenda because of the possibility of marginalization of those rights by fundamentalist religious political parties or groups. This book explores relations between Islam and democracy in the post-Arab Spring era by focusing on the roles of newly established and democratically elected Islamist governments and their political, economic and constitutional programs; religious freedoms; relations between their security sector and the governments; and regional alignments based on sectarian differences. It offers readers a more complete overview of the complex and interrelated aspects of the Arab Spring and the roles of Islam and democracy in these ongoing developments.

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About the Author:

Aylin Unver Noi is an Assistant Professor in the International Relations Department at Gedik University, Faculty of Economics and Administrative Sciences, Istanbul. She holds an MA and PhD in European Union Politics and International Relations from the European Union Institute, Marmara University, Istanbul, and a BA in International Relations from Bilkent University, Ankara. Dr. Noi is the author of The Euro-Mediterranean Partnership and the Broader Middle East and North Africa Initiative: Competing or Complementary Projects? (published in English by University Press of America, Lanham, MD, 2011), The Rise of Nationalism in Europe (published in Turkish by IQ Publishers, Istanbul, 2007), as well as several articles on the Arab Spring.

Review:

"The Arab Spring is more than Islam and democracy. It is the spontaneous outburst of peoples' - particularly youth's - aspirations for Dignity, Work, Liberty and Citizenship, in the words of the Tunisian and Egyptian slogans. It is also the still-unfolding story of society, economy and politics in the affected countries when more organized forces take over the political opening made by the intifada, the uprising. Ideology, religion, demographics, politics and economics all affect the evolution of the countries involved and they in turn affect their neighbors in the region. This book examines these paths in depth as the countries turn their backs on mukhabarat dictatorships and head toward democracy, [which is] still a long way off." - I. William Zartman, Professor Emeritus at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies

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Aylin Unver Noi
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