Revolutionary Iran: A History of the Islamic Republic

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Oxford University Press, 2013 - HISTORY - 496 pages
The Iranian Revolution of 1979 was a defining moment of the modern era. Its success unleashed a wave of Islamist fervor across the Middle East and signaled a sharp decline in the appeal of Western ideologies in the Islamic world. And the reaction it inspired testified to its importance: aswith the Russian and French revolutions, outsiders tried to crush it in its crib. A year after the mullahs' assumption of power, Iraq, with aid from other Arab states and the US, declared war on Iran. Yet the revolution prevailed, and the Islamic Republic persists to this day. And despite the deeprifts separating Sunnis and Shiites, the regime motivated successive waves of revolutionary Islamism across the entire region, from Afghanistan in the 1980s to Lebanon in the 200s to Egypt to Algeria today. In Revolutionary Iran, Michael Axworthy offers a richly textured and authoritative history of Iran from the 1979 revolution to the present. After an opening section that focuses on the sources of the revolution, Axworthy takes readers through the major periods of the era: the overthrow of the oldregime and the creation of the new one; the Iran-Iraq war; the reconstruction era following the war; the reformist wave led by Mohammed Khatami; and the current era, in which reactionaries have re-established control. Throughout, he emphasizes that the Iranian revolution was centrally important inmodern history because it provided the world with a clear model of development that was not rooted in Western ideologies. Whereas the world's major revolutions of the previous two centuries had been fuelled by Western, secular ideologies, the Iranian Revolution drew its inspiration from Islam. Botherudite and accessible, Revolutionary Iran is the definitive account of this epoch in all its humanity.

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REVOLUTIONARY IRAN: A History of the Islamic Republic

User Review  - Kirkus

Lucid exploration of a nation caught between two seemingly contradictory ideals: democracy on one hand and Islamic fundamentalism on the other.Axworthy (Centre for Persian and Iranian Studies/Univ. of ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - NielsenGW - LibraryThing

In Revolutionary Iran, Michael Axworthy makes a wonderful observation: “Iranian history can be seen as a microcosm of human history as a whole: empires, revolutions, invasions, art, architecture ... Read full review


Ten Days of Dawn Dahehye Fajr
Ma Chegoneh Ma Shodim? How Did We Become What We Are?
2 The 1970s and the Slide to Revolution
Islamic Republic 197980
The Imposed War 198088
Khamenei and Rafsanjani 198897
Khatami and Reform 19972005
Ahmadinejad and Khamenei 200512
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About the author (2013)

Michael Axworthy is Former Head of the Iran Section of the British Foreign Office from 1998-2000. He is currently Senior Lecturer and Director of the Centre for Persian and Iranian Studies at the University of Exeter. He is author of Empire of the Mind: A History of Iran (Penguin in the UK;Basic in the US).

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