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Dispatches From the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East , Eds. Paul Amar and Vijay Prashad (Minneapolis, mn : University of Minnesota Press, 2013)

Dispatches From the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East , Eds. Paul Amar and Vijay... More than four years after the so-called “Arab Spring” began, headlines across most of the Middle East seem depressingly retro. The United States is fighting Sunni extremists in Iraq. Activists imprisoned for peacefully protesting a repressive government in Egypt are on hunger strike. Gazans are digging out from the most recent Israeli bombardment. People from Morocco to Oman face poor job prospects and rising living costs. In 2011, people in the region argued over which dictator would be the next to fall. Today, activists breathe a sigh of relief when colleagues are released from prison on bail, even if they still face farcical trials. The sole bright spot is Tunisia, where despite set-backs, a genuine political (if not yet social) transition continues. Both because of the depressing nature of current events and the ease with which they overwhelm, Dispatches from the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East 2 offers a head-clearing experience. Reading it is a bit like looking at a wedding album amidst divorce proceedings. It’s a reminder of the sense of possibility and optimism that pervaded everything not very long ago—seen all the more bittersweetly given the knowledge of what has followed. The book’s editors http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Middle East Law and Governance Brill

Dispatches From the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East , Eds. Paul Amar and Vijay Prashad (Minneapolis, mn : University of Minnesota Press, 2013)

Middle East Law and Governance , Volume 7 (1): 169 – Apr 23, 2015

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2015 by Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
Subject
Review Essays
ISSN
1876-3367
eISSN
1876-3375
DOI
10.1163/18763375-00701010
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

More than four years after the so-called “Arab Spring” began, headlines across most of the Middle East seem depressingly retro. The United States is fighting Sunni extremists in Iraq. Activists imprisoned for peacefully protesting a repressive government in Egypt are on hunger strike. Gazans are digging out from the most recent Israeli bombardment. People from Morocco to Oman face poor job prospects and rising living costs. In 2011, people in the region argued over which dictator would be the next to fall. Today, activists breathe a sigh of relief when colleagues are released from prison on bail, even if they still face farcical trials. The sole bright spot is Tunisia, where despite set-backs, a genuine political (if not yet social) transition continues. Both because of the depressing nature of current events and the ease with which they overwhelm, Dispatches from the Arab Spring: Understanding the New Middle East 2 offers a head-clearing experience. Reading it is a bit like looking at a wedding album amidst divorce proceedings. It’s a reminder of the sense of possibility and optimism that pervaded everything not very long ago—seen all the more bittersweetly given the knowledge of what has followed. The book’s editors

Journal

Middle East Law and GovernanceBrill

Published: Apr 23, 2015

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