Essay on Democratization : The Middle East And North Africa

1172 Words Sep 15th, 2016 5 Pages
Democratization is not typically associated with the Middle East and North Africa. There are a variety of factors that can explain why this is the case. There is a lack or presence of civil society, the state controls the economy, the people are disadvantaged, the location of the Middle East and North Africa is disadvantageous for democracy, and the culture of the region can impact the government (Bellin 2004, 139-141). In The Robustness of Authoritarianism in the Middle East: Exceptionalism in Comparative Perspective Eva Bellin argues that these factors are not enough and instead “…a coercive state deeply opposed to democratic reform has quashed initiatives favorable to democracy” (Bellin 2004, 142). Bellin uses this to explain why the Middle East and North Africa have remained authoritarian and not taken the steps to democratization (Bellin 2004, 142). Bellin further outlines variables that cause the apparatus to become stronger or if they were removed could cause the state to begin the transition to democratization (Bellin 2004, 142-147). These variables are then put into context of the Middle East. Her primary argument is that the security apparatus makes it more difficult for democratization to take place but there appears to be several problems with the focus of her argument.
One problem in general is the writing of the article. There appears to be three different arguments within her article that never feel like they fully come together into one interconnected…

Related Documents