Rebels with a Cause: The Failure of the Left in Iran by Maziar Behrooz

$ 50.00

Why were left-wing politics so ineffective in Iran while socialism and communism were making great strides in the rest of the world? Why did the Left not capitalise on Iran's brief fling with anti-western politics in the early 1950's before the CIA and MI6 inspired military coup which restored the Shah to his throne? And above all why was the Left so crushingly defeated after the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran?

The author unearths new details and provides fresh insights into an enduring puzzle of modern Iranian political history, concluding that the Left's demise came from a combination of Iran's geopolitical setting, where both the Soviet and western worlds saw advantage in the stability of Iran during the Cold War, as well as internal factors such as splits and factionalism, and - not least - the Iranian Left's over-enthusiastic devotion to a barren Stalinism with its poverty of philosophy and ideas. Based on primary and secondary Persian-language sources never before published in English, this book is a crucial addition to the literature on modern Iranian history and the study of communist and socialist history in general.

Maziar Behrooz has taught at the University of California, Berkeley, and is now Assistant Professor of History at San Francisco State University.

Year: 2024


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