Book details

An Introduction to the Modern Middle East

History, Religion, Political Economy, Politics

By David S. Sorenson

About the Book

Combining elements of comparative politics with a country-by-country analysis, author David S. Sorenson provides a complete and accessible introduction to the modern Middle East. With an emphasis on the politics of the region, the text also dedicates chapters specifically to the history, religions, and economies of countries in the Persian (Arabian) Gulf, the Eastern Mediterranean, and North Africa. In each country chapter, a brief political history is followed by discussions of democratization, religious politics, women's issues, civil society, economic development, privatization, and foreign relations.

In this updated and revised second edition, An Introduction to the Modern Middle East includes new material on the Arab Spring, the changes in Turkish politics, the Iranian nuclear issues, and the latest efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian dilemma. Introductory chapters provide an important thematic overview for each of the book's individual country chapters and short vignettes throughout the book offer readers a chance for personal reflection.

About the Author

Dr. David S. Sorenson is professor of national security studies at the US Air War College, Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama. Professor Sorenson formerly served on the faculties of Denison University and the University of Colorado at Denver, and was a fellow at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at Ohio State University. The author or editor of numerous works on Middle East politics, defense budget politics, and national security affairs, Professor Sorenson has also served as Chair of the International Security Studies Section of the International Studies Association, and Chair of the International Security and Arms Control Section of the American Political Science Association.


"This is no ordinary textbook on the Middle East. It has a story to tell, and does so by evoking images and providing anecdotes that are culturally sensitive and insightful. This book is rich in content. It draws on religion, politics, economics, and geography to provide a comprehensive and balanced analytical perspective. I will definitely use it in my classrooms, and recommend it to anyone interested in the Middle East."
Hamoud Salhi, California State University, Dominguez Hills

"This is a superbly tailored introductory survey of the contemporary Middle East. It is comprehensive, well written, sufficiently rigorous, and remarkably objective. Students will find its thematic framework a great help as they analyze and compare over sixteen country case studies. Sorenson's creative approach and impeccable scholarship in this text are sure to set the standards for years to come."
Abdalla M. Battah, Minnesota State University, Mankato