Fate of Third Worldism in the Middle East: Iran, Palestine and Beyond Edited by Rasmus C. Elling and Sune Haugbolle

$ 40.00

A provocative reinterpretation of the tumultuous late 1970s and early 1980s in the Middle East

In the latter half of the twentieth century, a revolutionary idea promised to upend the global order. Anti-imperialist militancy, bolstered by international solidarity, would lead to not only the national liberation of oppressed peoples but universal emancipation, shattering the division between the prosperous nations of the capitalist West and the poorer countries of the Global South.

The idea was Third Worldism, and among others it inspired struggles in Iran and Palestine. By the early 1980s, however, progressive visions of independence and freedom had fallen to the reality of an oppressive Islamic theocracy in Iran, while the Palestinian Revolution had been eclipsed by civil war in Lebanon, Israeli aggression and intra-Arab conflict.

This thought-provoking volume explores the dramatic decline of Third Worldism in the Middle East. It reveals the lived realities of the time by focusing on the key protagonists - from student activists to guerrilla fighters, and from volunteer nurses to militant intellectuals - and juxtaposes the Iranian and Palestinian cases to offer a riveting re-examination of this defining era. Ultimately, it challenges us to reassess how we view the end of the long 1960s, prompting us to reconsider perennial questions concerning self-determination, emancipation, change and solidarity.

Rasmus C. Elling is Associate Professor at the University of Copenhagen.

Sune Haugbolle is Professor of Global Studies at Roskilde University.

Year: 2024


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