States, Ideologies, and Social Revolutions: A Comparative Analysis of Iran, Nicaragua, and the Philippines

By Misagh Parsa | Go to book overview

Preface

This book presents both a new theoretical framework for the study of social revolutions and new evidence about the revolutionary processes in Iran, Nicaragua, and the Philippines. To my knowledge, this is the first comparative work on the revolutions in these countries. The three cases proved to be appropriate choices for a comparative analysis because, despite some similarities, they experienced different outcomes. While Iran and Nicaragua underwent social revolution, the Philippines experienced a political revolution only. This is also the first study to analyze the structure of both the state and the economy, which are critical components in the study of revolutions. At the same time, this work analyzes the collective actions by the major participants in the revolutionary struggles, namely students, clergy, workers, capitalists, and challenging organizations. The book examines in depth the demands and ideologies of these actors during the revolutionary processes. Based on detailed examination of extensive primary data, the book challenges the prevailing theories of social revolution that attribute sweeping powers to ideology.

I would like to thank the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy at Dartmouth College for providing the grant that made this research possible. I am grateful to my research assistants, Susan Rosales Nelson and Fiona Paua, for their meticulous work during data collection.

I was fortunate to have insightful critiques from a number of scholars who read all or parts of the manuscript. My deepest thanks go to Ervand Abrahamian, William Lee Baldwin, John Foran, Gene R. Garthwaite, John L. Hall, Douglas E. Haynes, Howard Kimeldorf, David Morgan, Jeffery Paige, A. Kevin Reinhart, Ken Sharpe, Marc Steinberg, Charles Tilly, and Stanley H. Udy, Jr. I owe special thanks to my colleague, John L. Campbell, who read the manuscript twice and provided very valuable suggestions. The support of my colleagues Denise Anthony, Eva Fodor, Christina Gomez, Raymond Hall, and Deborah King has been very helpful throughout the process of preparing the book.

A number of individuals graciously agreed to be interviewed for this book, and to them I extend my sincere gratitude. Dr. Oscar Arias, former

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