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Political Elites in the Middle East and North Africa

  • Clement M. Henry
Chapter

Abstract

The Middle East and North Africa, consisting of most of the Arab League members plus Iran, Israel, and Turkey, are regions of the traditional Muslim homeland that lie closest to Europe and where post-colonial elites were particularly conditioned by the dialectics of emancipation. The more protracted the struggle, the greater the opportunities to forge populations into new nations led by Western educated elites. Conversely, where nationalist agitation was confined to the cities, the military would replace traditional elites after independence in more inclusive political orders. By the 1970s, however, assertions of religious identity would challenge all of the post-colonial regimes, and those with the strongest civil societies, such as Tunisia, stood better chances than the others of weathering the storm of identity politics.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Clement M. Henry
    • 1
  1. 1.Emeritus Professor of GovernmentUniversity of Texas at AustinAustinUSA

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