Magazine article New Internationalist

The Second Arab Awakening: Revolution, Democracy and the Islamist Challenge from Tunis to Damascus

Magazine article New Internationalist

The Second Arab Awakening: Revolution, Democracy and the Islamist Challenge from Tunis to Damascus

Article excerpt

The Second Arab Awakening Revolution, Democracy and the Islamist Challenge from Tunis to Damascus by Adeed Dawisha (Norton, ISBN 9780393240122)

Adeed Dawisha's book is an up-tothe- minute overview of the progress or otherwise of the Middle East since the momentous events of the Arab Spring of 2011. Beginning with a potted history of the Arab states in the 1950s and '60s - what he terms the First Arab Awakening - and the subsequent rise to power of despots such as Nasser, Qadafiand Hafiz Assad, Dawisha then traces the revolutionary uprisings that spread from the spark in Tunisia, through Egypt and Yemen, Bahrain and Libya, most latterly to the as-yet unresolved catastrophe that is the Syrian civil war.

Written in an engaging style, The Second Arab Awakening is mercifully free of academic jargon and partisan point-scoring. The author is clear on the undoubted successes of the Arab Spring, rightly celebrating the ousting of long-standing tyrants and the holding of free elections in Tunisia, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. …

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