Blogging with BLane

  • Monarchies in MENA

    The MENA region has an unusually high concentration of monarchies given the decline in monarchical rule throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. Given the challenges the region faces including water and food insecurity, the resource curse, political pressures for economic and political liberalization, etc, monarchs in this region need to balance legitimacy and the degree […]

  • Documentary Reflection

    A Siege of Salt and Sand brought to light several key struggles of Tunisia including desertification, agricultural production, water security and describes the power imbalance between government authorities and the general populous. The documentary also discussed briefly the Tunisian revolt in 2010 that sparked the Arab Springs uprisings across the region. This brought about changes […]

  • Rentierism

    If oil rents produce peculiarly damaging political and social outcomes in MENA, is this due to the unusual size of those rents or to the interaction of those rents with other factors? The primary damage to political and social outcomes is due to the sheer size of the oil rents in the MENA region. The […]

  • Anderson Reflection

    One of the most interesting sections of Anderson’s analysis was when she discussed Kramer (neoconservative foreign policy positions who questioned why Islamist movements couldn’t be placed in the category of democratization) and Mitchell (a progressive who criticized that the languages of political Islam were only seen in Western scholarship through a process of translation). Anderson […]

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