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Understanding the Contemporary Middle East is an interdisciplinary book designed for use both as a core text for "Introduction to the Middle East" courses and as a supplement in a variety of discipline-oriented curriculums. The geographical domain of the volume is the Arab world (the Levant, the Arabian Peninsula, and North Africa), Iran, Israel, and Turkey; its temporal focus is post-World War II, with a particular emphasis on the 1990s.
There are very few books for classroom use that introduce students to the Middle East as a whole rather than focusing on a specific discipline. Understanding the Contemporary Middle East fills this gap. The fifteen authors, writing with clarity and precision, address a range of crucial issues facing the region in the twenty-first century: there are chapters addressing geography, history, politics, economics, international relations, the israeli-Palestinian conflict, the status of women, religion, class and ethnicity, patterns of population growth, and the literature of the region. Each chapter provides up-to-dateand engagingdescription and analysis, along with sugestions for further reading. Numerous maps and photographs help the reader gain a feel for the region.About the Author:
Jillian Schwedler is associate professor of political science at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Her publications include Faith in Moderation: Islamist Parties in Jordan and Yemen, winner of the 2007 Best Book Award of the American Political Science Association Democratization Section. The late Deborah J. Gerner was professor of political science at the University of Kansas. She was author of One Land, Two Peoples: The Conflict Over Palestine, as well as numerous articles dealing with the international relations and domestic politics of the Middle East.
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