Abdou Filali-Ansary and Alfred Stepan write about the "Arab Spring" in Latest Issue of Journal of Democracy
24 Apr, 2012, 11:00 ET
April issue also features articles on Southeast Asia and Nicaragua
WASHINGTON, April 24, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In the April 2012 issue of the Journal of Democracy (JoD), Abdou Filali-Ansary, founding director and professor at the Institute of Muslim Civilisations of the Aga Khan University in London, writes, "Democratic legitimacy is becoming the only form of political legitimacy acceptable in Arab societies. "But," he goes on to ask, "if this analysis is correct, how can we understand the persistence of calls for a return to shari'a, and the endorsement that such calls seem to receive when Arabs are allowed to exercise their democratic right to vote in free elections?" His essay offers a provocative but nuanced exploration of this question.
Filali-Ansary's observations in "The Languages of the Arab Revolutions" may help to explain recent developments in Tunisia, where—as Columbia University political scientist Alfred Stepan points out in his article "Tunisia's Transition and the Twin Tolerations"—"secular and religious opposition activists" have long been "agreeing on a common program ... that to some extent drew upon their shared usable past to imagine a democratic future."
The April issue also features "Ballots, Bullets, and the Bottom Billion," in which Arthur Goldsmith refutes the notion that elections in poor countries give rise to political violence; a set of four articles on "Democracy and the State in Southeast Asia"; an analysis of Freedom House's 2011 survey of "Freedom in the World"; and "Personalism and Populism in Nicaragua," an essay by Forrest Colburn and Arturo Cruz S. that illuminates the context of Daniel Ortega's 2011 re-election. To see the complete table of contents, please visit the JoD's new website, the beta version of which launches today.www.press.jhu.edu/cgi-bin/order.cgi?oc_id=32 www.journalofdemocracy.org [email protected]
SOURCE Journal of Democracy
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