Philosophy of Nonviolence: Revolution, Constitutionalism, and Justice beyond the Middle East

Hardcover | February 5, 2015

byChibli Mallat

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In 2011, the Middle East saw more people peacefully protesting long entrenched dictatorships than at any time in its history. The dictators of Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen were deposed in a matter of weeks by nonviolent marches. Imprecisely described as "the Arab Spring", the revolution has beenconvulsing the whole region ever since. Beyond an uneven course in different countries, Philosophy of Nonviolence examines how 2011 may have ushered in a fundamental break in world history. The break, the book argues, is animated by nonviolence as the new spirit of the philosophy of history.Philosophy of Nonviolence maps out a system articulating nonviolence in the revolution, the rule of constitutional law it yearns for, and the demand for accountability that inspired the revolution in the first place. Part One - Revolution, provides modern context to the generational revolt, probesthe depth of Middle Eastern-Islamic humanism, and addresses the paradox posed by nonviolence to the "perpetual peace" ideal. Part Two - Constitutionalism, explores the reconfiguration of legal norms and power structures, mechanisms of institutional change and constitution-making processes in pursuitof the nonviolent anima. Part Three - Justice, covers the broadening concept of dictatorship as crime against humanity, an essential part of the philosophy of nonviolence. It follows its frustrated emergence in the French revolution, its development in the Middle East since 1860 through the trialsof Arab dictators, the pyramid of accountability post-dictatorship, and the scope of foreign intervention in nonviolent revolutions. Throughout the text, Professor Mallat maintains thoroughly abstract and philosophical arguments, while substantiating those arguments in historical context enriched bya close participation in the ongoing Middle East revolution.

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In 2011, the Middle East saw more people peacefully protesting long entrenched dictatorships than at any time in its history. The dictators of Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen were deposed in a matter of weeks by nonviolent marches. Imprecisely described as "the Arab Spring", the revolution has beenconvulsing the whole region ever since. Beyo...

Chibli Mallat is a lawyer and a law professor. He serves as Presidential Professor of Law and Professor of Law and Politics of the Middle East at the S.J. Quinney School of Law at the University of Utah. He also holds the EU Jean Monnet Chair of European Law at Saint Joseph's University in Lebanon. Professor Mallat has taught law on t...

other books by Chibli Mallat

Format:HardcoverDimensions:408 pages, 9.29 × 6.5 × 1.3 inPublished:February 5, 2015Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199394202

ISBN - 13:9780199394203

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Table of Contents

PrefaceGeneral Introduction1. The Middle East Nonviolent Revolution: A philosophical manifestoPart I- Revolution2. Introduction- Nonviolence between order of reasons and decrees of reality3. A brief history of nonviolence in the Middle East4. Shattered political language: Reconstructing a humanist culture of nonviolence5. Nonviolence: The central philosophical paradox6. Conclusion- Rhythms of nonviolencePart II- Constitutionalism7. Introduction8. Caveat: Against Secession9. Constitutional ruins and unfathomable politics of transition10. Constitution-writing: LEJFARC's universal template11. Middle Eastern constitutionalism12. Conclusion- Constitutionalism and nonviolencePart III- Justice13. Introduction- The order of reasons restated14. 'Dictatorship is a crime against humanity'15. Middle Eastern precedents and universal trends16. The pyramid of accountability17. Justice and nonviolence18. Coda: on foreign intervention and nonviolence19. Epilogue-The 2011 AnimaBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"Chibli Mallat invites us to think about what has been obscured by the reactionary turn in the ongoing revolutions in the Arab world: the non-violent origins of the revolts, and the possibilities of nonviolent action following violent turns. Structured around the three central themes ofrevolution, constitutionalism, and justice, he shows the necessary links between strategies, institutional arrangements, and the telos of political change. Moving back and forth between revolutionary France and the present Middle East, and between philosophical discourse and constitutionalproposals, Mallat's Philosophy of Nonviolence makes a plea for a fine-grained processual analysis to frame these revolutions, whose significance goes beyond their specific locales to our collective futures. This inspiring and erudite book deserves a wide readership." --John Borneman, Professor of Anthropology, Princeton University