PROGRAM DETAILS

The Age of Competing Islamisms: A Fight Over the Future of the Middle East

Instructor
Mehmet Gurses
Category
International Relations / Current Events
FPL12024

Course Description

While much has been said about the centuries-old rivalry between Shiite and Sunni Muslims, the emerging balance of power in the region points to an epoch characterized by a noteworthy split within the Sunni Middle East. This split has pitted different types of Islamism against one another. On the one hand, there is a resurgent Turkey attempting to claim its “Islamic” past and aligning with certain Muslim groups and states. On the other hand, an alliance led by Saudi Arabia and Egypt under president Sisi strives to prevent the rise of this alliance. While these two forms of Islamism compete for power and influence, they also have to account for the Iran-led Shiite bloc with an entirely different set of goals and ideology. In this presentation, Dr. Mehmet Gurses tackles this new and potentially much more dangerous division in the Middle East. How does this change impact our allies in the region? Do these changes necessitate finding new allies in the Middle East? How will these monumental changes affect America’s key ally, Israel, in the region? 

About the Instructor

  • Mehmet Gurses, PhD is a professor of Political Science at Florida Atlantic University and comparative politics and international relations editor of the journal Politics and Religion (Cambridge University Press). His research interests include ethnic and religious conflict, post-civil war peace building, post-civil war democratization, and the Middle East. He is the author of Anatomy of a Civil War: Sociopolitical Impacts of the Kurdish Conflict in Turkey (University of Michigan Press, 2018) and co-editor of Conflict, Democratization and the Kurds in the Middle East: Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). He has published extensively in journals including, International Interactions, Social Science Quarterly, Civil Wars, Defense and Peace Economics, Democratization, International Studies Perspectives, Party Politics, Conflict Management and Peace Science, Political Research Quarterly, and Comparative Politics.