7AAJM214 State Builders, Revolutionaries and Reactionaries: Makers of the Contemporary Middle East
Module tutor: Simon Waldman
Assessment: 1 x 5,000-word essay
Teaching pattern: one two-hour class per week, for ten weeks.
The contemporary state system in the Middle East is a relic of World War I, in the aftermath of which the European powers and their regional allies dismembered the defeated Ottoman Empire and distributed the parts in accordance with their interests. But the artificiality and instability of the resultant entities created a political legacy whence the role of the absolute leader supersedes the role of political institutions, and where citizenship is largely synonymous with submission. This course offers an in-depth analysis of the origin, scope, and implications of this phenomenon through an examination of the main leaders who shaped Middle Eastern history during this period.