Democracy in Iran: History and the Quest for Liberty

Democracy in Iran History and the Quest for Liberty Today Iran is once again in the headlines Reputed to be developing nuclear weapons the future of Iraq s next door neighbor is a matter of grave concern both for the stability of the region and for th

  • Title: Democracy in Iran: History and the Quest for Liberty
  • Author: Ali Gheissari Vali Nasr
  • ISBN: 9780195189674
  • Page: 113
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Today Iran is once again in the headlines Reputed to be developing nuclear weapons, the future of Iraq s next door neighbor is a matter of grave concern both for the stability of the region and for the safety of the global community President George W Bush labeled it part of the Axis of Evil, and rails against the country s authoritarian leadership Yet as Bush trumpeToday Iran is once again in the headlines Reputed to be developing nuclear weapons, the future of Iraq s next door neighbor is a matter of grave concern both for the stability of the region and for the safety of the global community President George W Bush labeled it part of the Axis of Evil, and rails against the country s authoritarian leadership Yet as Bush trumpets the spread of democracy throughout the Middle East, few note that Iran has one of the longest running experiences with democracy in the region In this book, Ali Gheissari and Vali Nasr look at the political history of Iran in the modern era, and offer an in depth analysis of the prospects for democracy to flourish there After having produced the only successful Islamist challenge to the state, a revolution, and an Islamic Republic, Iran is now poised to produce a genuine and indigenous democratic movement in the Muslim world Democracy in Iran is neither a sudden development nor a western import, Gheissari and Nasr argue The concept of democracy in Iran today may appear to be a reaction to authoritarianism, but it is an old idea with a complex history, one that is tightly interwoven with the main forces that have shaped Iranian society and politics, institutions, identities, and interests Indeed, the demand for democracy first surfaced in Iran a century ago at the end of the Qajar period, and helped produce Iran s surprisingly liberal first constitution in 1906 Gheissari and Nasr seek to understand why democracy failed to grow roots and lost ground to an autocratic Iranian state Why was democracy absent from the ideological debates of the 1960s and 1970s Most important, why has it now become a powerful social, political, and intellectual force How have modernization, social change, economic growth, and the experience of the revolution converged to make this possible Gheissari and Nasr trace the fortunes of the democratic ideal from the inchoate demands

    831 Comment

    • Rflutist says:

      This book is an extrordinary look at the history of Iran, from the Constitutional Revolution of 1906, through and including the election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2005."Democracy in Iran" picks up where "The Turban for the Crown" leaves off. The authors present a thorough academic and educated analysis of historical events in Iran. Yet they take it a step further by analyzing the philosophy, thought process, and politics of Iran's respective leaders and population at large. The text of the book [...]

    • Aditya says:

      The first things you notice about this book is that it is not an easy read. It is a seriously researched and well written book which chronicles the progress of 'democracy' in Iran. Being someone interested in geopolitics and history, it was a very educational book for me. From the revolution in early 20th century to the changes in early 21st century, you see a complete change in the way religion and the clergy class are related to the power structure; going from being at least partially dependen [...]

    • Jamie Collins says:

      Goddam, read Zacharies review of if DinI. As for me, I am not finishing this book before the LRC puts out an APB, and I won't bring it back. That's not a criticism. As has been pointed out, the book is well researched but is painfully pedantic and not for the casual geopolihistorical reader (yt). That said, Zachary makes valid points when he notes the authors democracy=rise of commercialism 21st century school of journalism style. Can I rate a book I don't finish?

    • Zachary says:

      Must be read with a grain of salt, as it's written by two "democracy means the rise of the middle class" political scientists who cite Huntington and Fukuyama without irony. With that said, I have found no more comprehensive treatment of Iranian political economy over the course of the 20th century. Unfortunately, this is what Dabashi's new book should've been, minus Gheissari & Nasr's repugnant politics.

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