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Party Building in the Modern Middle East

by Michele Penner Angrist

Publication Year: 2006

Angrist considers why Turkey - alone of all the modern states that emerged from the Ottoman Empire - was the only Middle Eastern country to evolve lasting competitive political institutions, writing across the regional divides that have isolated Turkish, Arab, and Persian studies from each other.

Published by: University of Washington Press


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pp. v-vi

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pp. vii-viii

I was fortunate to receive financial support for the research and writing of the original manuscript on which the book is based from a number of sources, including a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship and fieldwork funding from the American Research Institute in Turkey, the Institute for Turkish Studies, and Princeton University's ...

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Introduction: Party Systems and Regime Formation in the Middle East

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pp. 3-28

Faced with defeat at the ballot box, the Republican People's Party assumed the role of loyal opposition while its rival took control of the Turkish ship of state. This peaceful transfer of power—a rare phenomenon in the Middle East—ushered in a new, pluralistic era in Turkish political history. Since 1950, except for very brief intervals of military rule, ...

Part I: Explaining Party System Characteristics

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1. The Emergence of the Preponderant Single-Party Systems

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pp. 31-53

True, these parties were not the only parties present on the political stage at independence: Tunisia's Neo-Destour and South Yemen's and Algeria's respective National Liberation Fronts had their would-be rivals. They were "preponderant," however, in that they were mass parties organized in all (or nearly all) urban and rural areas: they exerted social control in both the ...

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2. The Emergence of the Multiparty Systems

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pp. 54-72

This chapter explains why multiparty rather than single preponderant party systems arose in Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Syria, and Egypt. As was the case in Tunisia, South Yemen, and Algeria, in these countries traditional elites began demanding independence from their imperial occupiers early in the twentieth century. These societies also were undergoing similar modernizing transformations that entailed the ...

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3. The Emergence of Bipartism in Turkey

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pp. 73-100

At the same time, because they were never colonized, Turks never fought an extended independence battle against an intransigent imperial power1—a battle, that is, that could have seen mass mobilization-inclined, second-generation elites take control of the nationalist movement as occurred in Tunisia, South Yemen, and Algeria. These two factors ensured that Turkey would arrive ...

Part II: The Impact of Party Systems on Regime Formation

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4: Preponderant Single Parties and Immediate Authoritarian Rule

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pp. 103-122

Chapter 4 argues that the emergence of single, preponderant, mass-mobilizing parties in Tunisia, South Yemen, and Algeria helps to explain why party leaders sought to monopolize political power and set up authoritarian one-party regimes after independence as well as why party leaders were able to do so quickly and effectively. ...

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5. Polarization, Mobilizational Asymmetry, and Delayed Authoritarian Rule

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pp. 123-157

These were countries in which multiple political parties were present in the public arena at independence. No single actor could dictate and enforce the rules of a stable founding regime at that juncture. Instead, during transitional periods, the rules of the game were in flux as these parties and other actors jockeyed for position and for political advantage ...

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6. Depolarization, Increased Mobilizational Symmetry, and the Consolidation of Competitive Politics in Turkey

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pp. 158-187

In part extending the arguments of chapter 3, it demonstrates that center-periphery conflict manifested itself in all four such confrontations (see table 13). Though the center nearly always maintained the upper hand, it faced repeated challenges from the periphery. The peripheral "Second Group" challenged the central "First Group" in the ...

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Conclusion: The Arguments in Middle East and Comparative Perspective

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pp. 188-204

It has emphasized the pivotal role played by party actors in the regime-formation processes that unfolded in ten countries in the region as political elites navigated critical historical junctures when old rules had crumbled and new rules were open to be shaped. The analysis combines attention to party system characteristics with an understanding of democratic regimes as ...


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pp. 205-218


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pp. 219-236


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pp. 237-247

E-ISBN-13: 9780295801124
E-ISBN-10: 0295801123
Print-ISBN-13: 9780295986463
Print-ISBN-10: 0295986468

Publication Year: 2006