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ALL IN THE FAMILY: ABSOLUTISM, REVOLUTION, AND DEMOCRACY IN THE MIDDLE EASTERN MONARCHIES.

ALL IN THE FAMILY: ABSOLUTISM, REVOLUTION, AND DEMOCRACY IN THE MIDDLE EASTERN MONARCHIES By Michael Herb Published by SUNY ISBN 0-7914-4168-7 Price $25.95

One observer of monarchies in the developing world writing in the late 1960s concluded that their future was "bleak" and that "the key questions concern simply the scope of the violence and their demise and who wields the violence." Three decades later, eight Middle Eastern monarchies have defied this prediction and other similarly bleak prognostications.

In this book Michael Herb proposes a new paradigm for understanding politics in Saudi Arabia and the Gulf. He critiques the theory of the rentier state and argues that we must put political institutions -- and specifically monarchism -- at the centre of any explanation of Gulf politics. All in the Family provides a compelling and fresh analysis of the importance of monarchism in the region, and points out the crucial role of the ruling families in creating monarchal regimes. It addresses the issue of democratisation in the Middle Eastern monarchies, arguing that the prospects for the gradual emergence of constitutional monarchy are better than is often thought.
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Author:Rhodes, Fred
Publication:The Middle East
Date:Oct 1, 1999
Words:185
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