Rethinking social capital and civil society:Reflections from the recent uprisings of the Middle East

Middle East Studies Online Journal- ISSN 2109-9618- Issue n°6. Volume 3 ( Summer 2011)

Etudes  du Moyen-Orient. N°6. Volume 3. ( Eté 2011)

.2011دراسات الشرق الأوسط، مجلة فكرية محكمة. العدد السادس . المجلد الثالث صيف

 

Akbar Valadbigi*

Shahab Ghobadi**

Abstract: The ongoing unrests in the Middle East have opened up new debates on the relationship between social capital and civil society. But what actually are they, and what applications do they have for the region of the Middle East? The relationship between social capital and civil society in this region is much debated, but scarcely conceived. This paper is intended to explore the practical and theoretical significances of these concepts at the heart of the recent uprising in the Middle East and North Africa and suggests some recommendations that can be of potential application in strengthening civil society which can bring effective changes in the political life of the Middle East.

This paper also strives to analyze the current state of social capital and civil society in this region. It suggests that although the Middle Eastern nations have always been subject to severe violence and harshness, civil society organizations and the stock of social capital can be seen as rising. It is argued that a society with higher rates of social capital is more likely to benefit from more stable democracy and politics that are typical of a modern civil society.

Keywords: Social capital, civil society, the Middle East, democracy, uprising

 

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Rethinking social capital and civil society


* Islamic Azad University, Sanandaj Branch, Kurdistan, Iran

E-mail: karvan74@gmail.com

** Islamic Azad University, Sanandaj Branch, Kurdistan, Iran

E-mail: arashavin@gmail.com

 

 

 

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