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Iran’s Regime Escalates Crackdown Ahead of Election

Iran’s Regime Escalates Crackdown Ahead of Election

As part of a new campaign of media crackdown and intimidation, Iranian security agents raided the offices of five reformist-leaning newspapers on Sunday and arrested more than a dozen journalists. Since Sunday three more journalists have been arrested. Iran’s intelligence ministry took responsibility for the arrests, accusing the detained journalists of being members of “one of the biggest media networks” ...

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“Democratic Sanctions” and Democratization

“Democratic Sanctions” and Democratization

Using a new data set that covers post‐Cold War sanctions for the period 1990–2010, a new working paper argues that, contrary to previous research, sanctions have a positive effect on democratization: Sanctions and Democratization in the Post-Cold War Era, by Christian von Soest and Michael Wahman. Here is the abstract: Previous research, which has focused mostly on pre‐1990 dynamics, has shown that ...

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An Ethnographic Analysis of Iran’s Green Movement

An Ethnographic Analysis of Iran’s Green Movement

The current issue of Mobilization (Volume 17, No. 4: December 2012) is devoted to special theme of “Understanding the Middle East Uprisings”. Along with articles on the Arab Spring, it includes an excellent article on Iran’s Green movement by Kevan Harris, titled The Brokered Exuberance of the Middle Class: An Ethnographic Analysis of Iran’s 2009 Green Movement [behind pay-wall]. Harris’ ...

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Freedom House Report: ‘Freedom in the World 2013’

Freedom House Report: ‘Freedom in the World 2013’

Freedom House released today its annual report on the state of global freedom: Freedom in the World 2013. The Freedom House report evaluates the civil liberties and political rights of 195 countries during 2012. According to the report, as the year 2012 drew to a close, events in the Middle East dramatized two competing trends: demands for change pushed forward ...

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New Book: ‘Middle East Authoritarianisms’

New Book: ‘Middle East Authoritarianisms’

Middle East Authoritarianisms: Governance, Contestation, and Regime Resilience in Syria and Iran Edited by Steven Heydemann and Reinoud Leenders. Published by Stanford University Press (Stanford Studies in Middle Eastern and Islamic Societies and Cultures), January 1st, 2013 Description: The developments of early 2011 have left the political landscape of the Middle East changed but recognizable. Even as urgent struggles continue, ...

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Fighting for the Social Sciences in Iran

Fighting for the Social Sciences in Iran

Three years ago, in the wake of 2009 post-election protest movement and the Stalin-style show trial in Tehran, where the reformist Saeed Hajjarian was forced to denounce the application of Max Weber’s account of patrimonial form of legitimacy to Iran’s ruling regime, the supreme leader Ali Khamenei called for a new wave of Islamization of social sciences in Iran higher ...

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“Campaign of Repression” against Iran’s Civil Society

“Campaign of Repression” against Iran’s Civil Society

According to new report by Human Rights Watch, titled Why They Left: Stories of Iranian Activists in Exile, published yesterday, the space in Iran for civil society has been dramatically shrinking since the brutal crackdown following the rigged presidential election in June 2009. The 60-page report documents the experiences of dozens of Iranian rights defenders, journalists, bloggers, and lawyers whom security ...

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Corruption and Authoritarianism in Iran

Corruption and Authoritarianism in Iran

Transparency International published two days ago its annual Corruption Perceptions Index for 2012. The Corruption Perceptions Index ranks countries and territories based on how corrupt their public sector is perceived to be. Iran is ranked 133th this year and fell 13 places further from last year. Iran is now among 40 most corrupt countries in the world. Since Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s ...

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Nader Hashemi: ‘Can Islam be Reconciled with Democracy?’

Nader Hashemi: ‘Can Islam be Reconciled with Democracy?’

This is the lecture given by Nader Hashemi (University of Denver) under the title “Can Islam be Reconciled with Democracy: Critical Notes on the Arab Spring.” on November 1, 2012 at the University of Kansas, Center for Global & International Studies and KU Middle East Studies. The footage from the Q & A session following the speech is here.

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The Impossible “Islamic State”

The Islamic Law scholar Wael B. Hallaq has a new book, published by Columbia University Press: The Impossible State: Islam, Politics, and Modernity’s Moral Predicament (November 2012). Wael Hallaq is currently the Avalon Foundation Professor in the Humanities at Columbia University at the Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies. His publications include Shari‘a: Theory, Practice, Transformations (2009); ...

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