Islam and Islamic movements and MENA politics

Authored by: Ewan Stein , Neil Russell

The Routledge Handbook to the Middle East and North African State and States System

Print publication date:  November  2019
Online publication date:  November  2019

Print ISBN: 9780367358877
eBook ISBN: 9780429342486
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter examines the role of Islam and politics in a sociologically and historically contingent way. It argues that Islam should not be treated as a unified, primary or autonomous category and explores some of the ways in which Islam has impacted political life in the contemporary Middle East at state, societal and international levels. The chapter concludes that the issue of Islam and politics should not be reduced to either “Orientalist” or “instrumentalist” caricature but should rather be studied in relation to the diverse ways in which it has influenced politics in societal, state and international realms.

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