Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Islamism, Revolution, and Civil Society

  • Sheri Berman (a1)
Abstract

Over recent decades, Islamism—the belief that Islam should guide social and political as well as personal life—has become a powerful force throughout much of the Muslim world. Through a discussion of the Egyptian case, this essay shows how the rise of Islamism can be illuminated by findings of the literatures on revolution and civil society, and vice versa. As many leading theories on revolutions would predict, the necessary precondition for Islamism's rise has been the declining efficacy and legitimacy of the state. Yet what has occurred in Egypt (and other parts of the Arab world) is not a successful revolution but a peculiar stalemate in which the existing regime retains political power while ceding substantial control over the societal and cultural spheres to the revolutionary challenger—an outcome that the literature does not envision. This stalemate, in turn, is largely a consequence of Islamists' ability to expand their presence in civil society. This expansion in Egypt and other Arab countries over recent decades is thus best understood as a sign not of benign liberalization, but rather of profound political failure, and as an incubator for illiberal radicalism.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Abdo Geneive. 2000 No God but God: Egypt and the Triumph of Islam New York: Oxford University Press
Ajami Fouad. 1995 The sorrows of Egypt Foreign Affairs 75 5 72 88
Ajami Fouad. 1998 The Dream Palace of the Arabs: A Generation's Odyssey New York Pantheon Books
Al-Sayyid Mustapha K. 1995 A civil society in Egypt? Civil Society in the Middle East vol. 1 Augustu Richard Norton New York E. J. Brill 269 94
Alterman Jon B. 2000 Egypt: Stable, but for how long? The Washington Quarterly 23 4 107 18
Anderson Lisa. 1995 Peace and democracy in the Middle East: The constraints of soft budgets Journal of International Affairs 49 1 25 44
Anderson Lisa. 1997 Fulfilling prophecies: State policy and Islamist radicalism Political Islam: Revolution, Radicalism or Reform? Joh L. Esposito Boulder: Lynne Rienner Publishers 17 31
Ayubi Nazih. 1980 The political revival of Islam: The case of Egypt International Journal of Middle East Studies 12 4 481 99
Ayubi Nazih. 1982 The politics of militant Islamic movements in the Middle East Journal of International Affairs 36 (Fall-Winter) 271-83
Bayat Asef. 1998 Revolution without movement, movement without revolution: Comparing Islamic activism in Iran and Egypt Comparative Studies in Society and History 40 1 136 69
Bellah Robert N. Richar Madsen, William M. Sullivan Ann Swidler Steve M. Tipton 1985 Habits of the Heart: Individualism and Commitment in American Life Berkeley University of California Press
Berman Sheri. 1997 Civil society and the rise of the Weimar Republic World Politics 49 3 401 29
Carothers Thomas Marin Ottaway. 2000 The burgeoning world of civil society aid Funding Virtue: Civil Society Aid and Democracy Promotion, Thoma Carothers Marin Ottaway Washington, D.C. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace 3 18
Cordesman Anthony H. 1998 Demographics and the Coming Youth Explosion in the Gulf Washington, D.C. Center for Strategic and International Studies 1 56
Cordesman Anthony H. 1999 Stability and Instability in the Middle East: Economics, Demography, Energy, and Security Washington, D.C. Center for Strategic and International Studies
Davis Hannah. 1992 Taking up space in Tlemcen. The Islamist occupation of urban Algeria: An interview with Rabia Bekkar Middle East Report 179 11-5
Dekmejian R. Hrair 1995 Islam in Revolution: Fundamentalism in the Arab World 2d ed. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press
Denoeux Guilain. 1993 Urban Unrest in the Middle East: A Comparative Study of Informal Networks in Egypt, Iran, and Lebanon Albany: SUNY Press
Dessouki Ali E. Hillal 1981 The resurgence of Islamic organizations in Egypt: An interpretation Islam and Power Alexande H. Cudsi Al E. Hillal Dessouki Baltimore Johns Hopkins University Press 107 18
Diamond Larry. 1994 Rethinking civil society: Toward democratic consolidation Journal of Democracy 5 3 3 17
Dunn John. 1989 Modern Revolutions: An Introduction to the Analysis of a Political Phenomenon 2d ed. New York Cambridge University Press
Eberly E. Don 2000 The meanings, origins, and applications of civil society The Essential Civil Society Reader Do E. Eberly Lanham Md. Rowman and Littlefield
Eckstein Harry. 1965 On the etiology of internal wars History and Theory 4 2 133 63
Edwards Bob Michae W. Foley Diani Mario 2001 Beyond Tocqueville: Civil Society and the Social Capital Debate in Comparative Perspective Hanover N.H.: University Press of New England
Entelis John. 1995 Civil society and the authoritarian temptation in Algerian politics Civil Society in the Middle East vol. 1 Augustus Richard Norton New York E. J. Brill 45 86
Esposito John L. 1999 The Islamic Threat: Myth or Reality? 3d ed. New York Oxford University Press
Esposito John L. Graha Fuller Marti Kramer Danie Pipes 1999 Is Islamism a threat?: A debate The Middle East Quarterly 6 4 29 41
Esposito John L. Rober E. Mazur Sibusis Nkomo 1997 Political Islam: Revolution, Radicalism or Reform? Boulder Lynne Rienner Publishers
Feierabend Ivo K. Rosalin Feierabend Te Robert Gurr 1972 Anger, Violence, and Politics: Theories and Research Englewood Cliffs N.J.: Prentice Hall
Flores Alexander. 1993 Secularism, integralism and political Islam: The Egyptian debateMiddle East Report 183 32 8
Foran John. 1995 Revolutionizing theory/theorizing revolutions: State, culture, and society in recent works on revolution Debating Revolutions Nikk R. Keddie New York New York University Press 112 35
Gause F. Gregory 2000 The persistence of monarchy in the Arabian peninsula: A comparative analysis Middle East Monarchies: The Challenge of Modernity Josep Kostiner Boulder Lynne Rienner Publishers 167 86
Ghabra Shafeeq 1991 Voluntary associations in Kuwait: The foundation of a new system? Middle East Journal 45 2 199 215
Goldfrank Walter L. 1994 The Mexican revolution Revolutions: Theoretical, Comparative, And Historical Studies 2d ed. Jack A. Goldstone Fort Worth Harcourt Brace College Publishers 115 27
Goldstone Jack A. 1980 Theories of revolution: The third generation World Politics 32 3 425 53
Goldstone Jack A. 1986 The English revolution: A structuraldemographic approach Revolutions: Theoretical, Comparative, and Historical Studies Jack A. Goldstone San Diego Harcourt Brace Jovanovich 100 14
Goldstone Jack A. 1991a Revolution and Rebellion in the Early Modern World Berkeley University of California Press
Goldstone Jack A. 1991b An analytical framework Revolutions of the Late Twentieth Century Jack A. Goldstone Te Robert Gurr Farrok Moshiri Boulder Westview Press 37 51
Goldstone Jack A. 1994 The Comparative And Historical Study Of Revolutions Revolutions: Theoretical, Comparative, and Historical Studies 2d ed. Jack A. Goldstone Fort Worth Harcourt Brace College Publishers 1 18
Goldstone Jack A. 1999 Population and pivotal states The Pivotal States: A New Framework for U.S. Policy in the Developing World Rober Chase Emil Hill Paul M. Kennedy New York W. W. Norton 247 69
Goldstone Jack A. 2001 Toward a fourth generation of revolution theory Annual Review of Political Science 4 139 87
Goodwin Jeff. 2001 No Other Way Out: States and Revolutionary Movements, 1945–1991 New York Cambridge University Press
Gurr Ted Robert. 1970 Why Men Rebel Princeton Princeton University Press
Gurr Ted Robert. 1973 The revolution–social change nexus Comparative Politics 5 3 359 92
Gusfield Joseph R. 1962 Mass society and extremist politics American Sociological Review 27 1 19 30
Halebsky Sandor. 1976 Mass Society and Political Conflict New York Cambridge University Press
Hall John A. 1995 Civil Society: Theory, History, Comparison Cambridge Mass.: Polity Press
Heydemann Steve. 2002 Middle East studies after 9/11: Defending the discipline Journal of Democracy 13 3 102 8
Huntington Samuel P. 1968 Political Order in Changing Societies New Haven Yale University Press
Ibrahim Saad Eddin. 1980 Anatomy of Egypt's militant Islamic groups: Methodological note and preliminary findings International Journal of Middle East Studies 12 4 423 53
Ibrahim Saad Eddin. 1988 Egypt's Islamic activism in the 1980s Third World Quarterly 10 2 632 57
Ibrahim Saad Eddin. 1993 Crisis, elites and democratization in the Arab world Middle East Journal 47 2 292 305.
Ibrahim Saad Eddin. 1995 Civil society and prospects for democratization in the Arab world Civil Society in the Middle East vol. 1 Augustu Richard Norton New York E. J. Brill 27 54
Ibrahim Saad Eddin. 1996 Reform and frustration in Egypt Journal of Democracy 7 4 125 35
Johnson Chalmers. 1966 Revolutionary Change Boston Little, Brown
Karawan Ibrahim A. 1997 The Islamist Impasse New York Oxford University Press
Kepel Gilles. 1985 Muslim Extremism in Egypt: The Prophet and Pharaoh trans Jo Rothschild Berkeley University of California Press
Kepel Gilles. 2002 Jihad: The Trail of Political Islam trans Anthon Roberts Cambridge Harvard University Press
Khashan Hilal. 1997 The new world order and the tempo of militant Islam British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies 24 1 5 24
Kifner John. 1986 Egypt's new Islamic schools: Setting an example The New York Times 29 September, A2
Krämer Gudrun. 1992 Liberalization and democracy in the Arab world Middle East Report 174 22 35
Krämer Gudrun. 1993 Islamicist notions of democracy Middle East Report 183 2 8
Kramer Martin. 2001 Ivory Towers on Sand: The Failure of Middle Eastern Studies in America Washington, D.C.: The Washington Institute for Near East Policy
Kubba Laith. 2000 The awakening of civil society Journal of Democracy 11 3 84 90
Lester Toby. 1999 A conversation with Mary Anne Weaver Atlantic Unbound 17 February. Available at www.theatlantic.com/unbound/bookauth/ba990217.htm. Accessed 31 January 2002
MacFarquhar Neil. 2001 To U.S., a terrorist group; to Lebanese, a social agency The New York Times 28 December, A10. Available at www.nytimes.com/2001/12/28/international/middleeast/28LEBA.html. Accessed 31 January 2002
Maddy-Weitzman Bruce. 1996 The Islamic challenge in North Africa Terrorism and Political Violence 8 2 171 88
McAdam Doug John D. McCarthy Mayer N. Zald 1996 Comparative Perspectives on Social Movements: Political Opportunities, Mobilizing Structures, and Cultural Framings New York Cambridge University Press
Murphy Caryle. 2002 Passion for Islam. Shaping the Modern Middle East: The Egyptian Experience New York Scribner
Negus Steve. 1997 Down, but not out…. The Muslim Brothers keep a low profile, but their main activity— charity work—still goes on Cairo Times 3 April. Available at www.cairotimes.com/content/issues/Islists/down03.html. Accessed 31 January 2002
Norton Augustus Richard. 1993 The future of civil society in the Middle East Middle East Journal 47 2 205 16
Norton Augustus Richard 1995 Civil Society in the Middle East vol. 1. New York: E. J. Brill
Norton Augustus Richard 1996 Civil Society in the Middle East vol. 2. New York: E. J. Brill
Norton Augustus Richard. n.d. The virtue of studying in civil society The Civil Society Debate in Middle Eastern Studies? eds. Augustus Richard Norton, Roger Owen, Diane Singerman, and James Gelvin. Los Angeles: University of California, Los Angeles, Middle Eastern Identities Colloquium Series
Parkin Frank. 1968 Middle Class Radicalism: The Social Bases of the British Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament Manchester U.K.: Manchester University Press
Popkin Samuel L. 1979 The Rational Peasant: The Political Economy of Rural Society in Vietnam Berkeley University of California Press
Putnam Robert D. Rober Leonardi Rafaell Y. Nanetti 1993 Making Democracy Work: Civic Traditions in Modern Italy Princeton Princeton University Press
Rieff David. 1999 The false dawn of civil society: Debatable whether civil society can solve society's problems The Nation 22 February, 11 8
Riley Dylan. n.d. Hegemony and domination: Civil society and authoritarianism in interwar Europe. Unpublished manuscript, University of California, Davis. Rodenbeck, Max. 1998. Is Islamism losing its thunder? The Washington Quarterly 21 2 177 93
Rodenbeck Max. 1998 Is Islamism losing its thunder? The Washington Quarterly 21 2 177 93
Roy Olivier. 1994 The Failure of Political Islam trans Carol Volk Cambridge: Harvard University Press
Sadowski Yahya. 1987 Egypt's Islamist movement: A new political and economic force Middle East Insight 5 3 37 44
Sadowski Yahya. 1993 The New Orientalism and the democracy debate Middle East Report 183 14 21 40
Schwedler Jillian. 1995 Toward Civil Society in the Middle East?: A Primer Boulder Lynne Rienner Publishers
Seligman Adam B. 1992 The Idea of Civil Society New York Free Press
Sewell William H. 1980 Work and Revolution in France: The Language of Labor from the Old Regime to 1848 New York Cambridge University Press
Sewell William H. 1985 Ideologies and social revolutions: Reflections on the French case The Journal of Modern History 57 1 57 85
Singerman Diane. 1995 Avenues of Participation: Families, Politics, and Networks in Urban Quarters of Cairo Princeton Princeton University Press
Singerman Diane. n.d. Civil society in the shadow of the Egyptian state: The role of informal networks in the construction of public life The Civil Society Debate in Middle Eastern Studies? Augustus Richard Norton Roger Owen Diane Singerman James Gelvin Los Angeles University of California, Los Angeles, Middle Eastern Identities Colloquium Series
Sivan Emmanuel. 1990a Radical Islam: Medieval Theology and Modern Politics New Haven Yale University Press
Sivan Emmanuel. 1990b The Islamic resurgence: Civil society strikes back Journal of Contemporary History 25 2/3 353 64
Sivan Emmanuel. 1997 Constraints and opportunities in the Arab world Journal of Democracy 8 2 103 13
Sivan Emmanuel. 1998 Why radical Muslims aren't taking over governments Middle East Review of International Affairs 2 2 9 16
Sivan Emmanuel. 2000 Illusions of change Journal of Democracy 11 3 69 83
Skocpol Theda. 1979 States and Social Revolutions: A Comparative Analysis of France, Russia, and China New York Cambridge University Press
Skocpol Theda. 1982 Rentier state and Shi'a Islam in the Iranian revolution Theory and Society 11 3 265 83
Skocpol Theda. 1985 Cultural idioms and political ideologies in the revolutionary reconstruction of state power: A rejoinder to Sewell The Journal of Modern History 57 1 86 96
Skocpol Theda. 1994 Social Revolutions in the Modern World New York Cambridge University Press
Tilly Charles. 1986 Does modernization breed revolution? Revolutions: Theoretical, Comparative, and Historical Studies Jack A. Goldstone San Diego Harcourt Brace Jovanovich
Tocqueville Alexis de. 1969 Democracy in America J. P. Mayer trans. George Lawrence. Garden City, N.Y. Anchor Books
Trofimov Yaroslav. 2001 Complex foe: Brandishing weapons and aid, Hezbollah tests U.S. resolve The Wall Street Journal 17 December, 1
Trotsky Leon. 1980 The History of the Russian Revolution New York Monad Press
United Nations Development Programme 2002 Arab Human Development Report New York United Nations Publications
Wickham Carrie Rosefsky. 1994 Beyond democratization: Political change in the Arab World PS: Political Science and Politics 27 3 507 9
Wickham Carrie Rosefsky. 1997 Islamic mobilization and political change: The Islamic trend in Egypt's professional associations Political Islam Joel Beinin Joe Stork Berkeley University of California Press 120 35
Wickham Carrie Rosefsky. 2002 Mobilizing Islam: Religion, Activism, and Political Change in Egypt New York Columbia University Press
Wickham-Crowley Timothy P. 1987 The rise (and sometimes fall) of guerrilla governments in Latin America Sociological Forum 2 3 473 99
Wolfinger Raymond Barbar Kaye Wolfinger Kennet Prewitt Sheila Rosenhack 1964 America's radical right Ideology and Discontent David E. Apter New York Free Press
Zakaria Fareed. 2001 The politics of rage: Why do they hate us? Newsweek 15 October 22 40
Zaki Moheb. 1995 Civil Society and Democratization in Egypt, 1981–1994 Cairo: Konrad Adenauer Stiftung
Zubaida Sami. 1992 Islam, the state, and democracy: Contrasting conceptions of society in Egypt Middle East Report 179 2 10
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Perspectives on Politics
  • ISSN: 1537-5927
  • EISSN: 1541-0986
  • URL: /core/journals/perspectives-on-politics
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 205 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 967 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 22nd October 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.