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El-Kazaz, Sarah, Clark, Janine, Harb, Mona and Salman, Lana (2022) 'Towards a Relational Approach to Local Politics.' In: Lynch, Marc, Schwedler, Jillian and Yom, Sean, (eds.), The Political Science of the Middle East: Theory and Research Since the Arab Uprisings. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 256-280.

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The Arab uprisings of 2011–12 brought into stark relief the fact that neither states nor societies in the Middle East were monolithic units. Instead, the region shows remarkable variation in terms of administration, governance, and development at the local level. Hence, the study of local politics—often termed “subnational politics” in mainstream political science—in its own right has gained greater urgency. This chapter argues that this new field of research ought to be conceptualized in relation to localities and the study of politics at multiple scales. This builds on methodological and disciplinary transformations, namely the growing recognition of the importance of localized processes as well as the adoption of interdisciplinary analytical frames, including the spatial turn in conceptualizing political processes. The chapter therefore breaks the encumbering label of “subnational politics” in favor of “local politics,” thereby embracing the productivity of localities and the dynamism of “scalar politics.”

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: Local Politics, Urban Politics, Scale, Political Geography, Middle East and North Africa
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Politics & International Studies
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JS Local government. Municipal government
ISBN: 9780197640043
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2022 11:50

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