Catalogue

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Hezbollah : a history of the "party of god" /
Dominique Avon and Anaïs-Trissa Khatchadourian ; translated by Jane Marie Todd.
imprint
Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, c2012.
description
244 p. : ill., maps ; 22 cm.
ISBN
0674066510 (alk. paper), 9780674066519 (alk. paper)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
uniform title
imprint
Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, c2012.
isbn
0674066510 (alk. paper)
9780674066519 (alk. paper)
contents note
Introduction -- 1982/1985-1991: a militia of professional revolutionaries for the disinherited fringe -- 1999-2000: a state within the state, the Vietcong in the heart of Singapore -- 2000-2009: a model of restored pride, a contested national party -- Documents of the hezbollah: open letter, february 16, 1985; political charter, november 30, 2009.
catalogue key
8618901
 
Includes bibliographical references (p. [223]-226) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Publishers Weekly on 2012-07-02:
Avon and Khatchadourian, respectively a historian and a graduate student at France's Universite du Maine, attempt to dispel some of the mystique surrounding the famously secretive Hezbollah-a staunch ally of Iran and the most powerful political force in Lebanon-whose ability to confront Israel has helped it "[acquire] in Lebanese society... a reputation synonymous with pride." (The U.S. and several other countries consider Hezbollah a terrorist organization.) The authors trace the militant Shiite Hezbollah's origins to the Lebanese civil war and the overthrow of the Shah in Iran. In drily academic, sometimes telegraphic language, the first three chapters focus more on the political machinations that brought Hezbollah to power than on the group's social programs, military tactics, or radical theology. Originally published in 2010, the book touches scantily on events since the assassination of the group's leader, Rafic Hariri, and the authors rely too heavily on Hezbollah's rhetoric to explain its motives and actions. The book's second half consists of translations of various Hezbollah documents. In the end, not enough background information is provided for the general reader, while the specialist will find nothing new. (Sept.). (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Appeared in Choice on 2013-05-01:
This book serves as an introduction to the history and ideology of Hezbollah, the Shi'i Islamic Resistance Movement based in Lebanon. Avon (modern history, Universite du Maine, France) is the author of several books on modern religious history, including Les religions monotheistes (2009), and Khatchadourian is his doctoral student. The book was originally published in French in 2010. It stresses Hezbollah's consistent ideology of resistance, especially its rejection of compromise with the state of Israel. It includes a short history of the movement, two extended historical documents from 1985 and 2009, a lexicon explaining the significance of many terms in context, and a list of biographies of major actors in Lebanese politics over the past half century. It serves well as a handbook to the Hezbollah movement, though occasionally the authors assume too much information on the part of the reader. They deal in more detail with recent developments than with the movement's origins. The quality of translation in terms of word choice is somewhat uneven. Nevertheless, the inclusion of fascinating historical documents and useful reference information make the book helpful for students seeking to understand the movement. Summing Up: Recommended. Undergraduate and graduate collections. P. Rowe Trinity Western University
Reviews
Review Quotes
It serves well as a handbook to the Hezbollah movement...The inclusion of fascinating historical documents and useful reference information make the book helpful for students seeking to understand the movement.
Though the book was written before the outbreak of violence in Syria--and thus prior to Hezbollah's demise as the hero of the Arabs--it provides important insight into the paradox of Hezbollah's ideology and the crux of the party's current predicament...[The] book lays the ground for understanding Hezbollah's fall from Arab grace and current events in the Levant.
This item was reviewed in:
Publishers Weekly, July 2012
Choice, May 2013
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Summaries
Bowker Data Service Summary
Hezbollah's revolutionary role in global politics has invited lionization and vilification, rather than a clear-eyed view of its place in history. Now that the party is in power, how will Hezbollah reconcile its regional obligations with its religious beliefs? This nonpartisan account offers insights that Western media have missed.
Main Description
For thirty years, Hezbollah has played a pivotal role in Lebanese and global politics. That visibility has invited Hezbollah's lionization and vilification by outside observers, and at the same time has prevented a clear-eyed view of Hezbollah's place in the history of the Middle East and its future course of action. Dominique Avon and Anaïs-Trissa Khatchadourian provide here a nonpartisan account which offers insights into Hezbollah that Western media have missed or misunderstood. Now part of the Lebanese government, Hezbollah nevertheless remains in tension with both the transnational Shiite community and a religiously diverse Lebanon. Calling for an Islamic regime would risk losing critical allies at home, but at the same time Hezbollah's leaders cannot say that a liberal regime is the solution for the future. Consequently, they use the ambiguous expression 'civil but believer state.' What happens when an organization founded as a voice of 'revolution' and then 'resistance' occupies a position of power, yet witnesses the collapse of its close ally, Syria? How will Hezbollah's voice evolve as the party struggles to reconcile its regional obligations with its religious beliefs? The authors' analyses of these key questions'buttressed by their clear English translations of foundational documents, including Hezbollah's open letter of 1985 and its 2009 charter, and an in-depth glossary of key theological and political terms used by the party's leaders'make Hezbollah an invaluable resource for all readers interested in the future of this volatile force.
Main Description
For thirty years, Hezbollah has played a pivotal role in Lebanese and global politics. That visibility has invited Hezbollah's lionization and vilification by outside observers, and at the same time has prevented a clear-eyed view of Hezbollah's place in the history of the Middle East and its future course of action. Dominique Avon and Anaïs-Trissa Khatchadourian provide here a nonpartisan account which offers insights into Hezbollah that Western media have missed or misunderstood. Now part of the Lebanese government, Hezbollah nevertheless remains in tension with both the transnational Shiite community and a religiously diverse Lebanon. Calling for an Islamic regime would risk losing critical allies at home, but at the same time Hezbollah's leaders cannot say that a liberal regime is the solution for the future. Consequently, they use the ambiguous expression "civil but believer state." What happens when an organization founded as a voice of "revolution" and then "resistance" occupies a position of power, yet witnesses the collapse of its close ally, Syria? How will Hezbollah's voice evolve as the party struggles to reconcile its regional obligations with its religious beliefs? The authors' analyses of these key questions-buttressed by their clear English translations of foundational documents, including Hezbollah's open letter of 1985 and its 2009 charter, and an in-depth glossary of key theological and political terms used by the party's leaders-make Hezbollah an invaluable resource for all readers interested in the future of this volatile force.
Table of Contents
List of Figures and Tablesp. ix
Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
The "Party of God": An Itinerary (1982-2009)
1982/1985-1991
A Militia of Professional Revolutionaries for the Disinherited Fringep. 11
1992-2000
A State within the State, the Vietcong in the Heart of Singaporep. 39
2000-2009
A Model of Recovered Pride, a Contested National Partyp. 69
Documents of the Hezbollah Open Letter
February 16, 1985p. 103
Political Charter
November 30, 2009p. 130
Conclusionp. 163
Appendixes
Lexiconp. 175
Portraitsp. 195
Cadres of the Hezbollahp. 215
Sourcesp. 220
Bibliographyp. 223
Indexp. 227
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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