As the US demand for Western-style democracy in the Middle East grows ever more strained, Harvard Middle East expert Jeremy Jones travels through the region evaluating the prospects for change. He engages with diverse political cultures, from traditional assemblies in the Persian Gulf, to sophisticated multiconfessional politics in the Levant. Drawing on 25 years experience in the region, and hundreds of interviews with government officials, opposition leaders, grassroots activists and ordinary people, he finds real momentum towards democratic reform, but concludes that to be successful and durable, it must be pursued through local political cultures, not in spite of them. With a new perspective on a troubled region, his critique of US policy argues that promoting a "one-size-fits-all" democratic model has been misguided, and ultimately counter-productive.
Genre: History, Political Science
Subgenre: Government / Comparative, Middle East / General