The Muslim Brotherhood is the most significant and enduring Sunni Islamist organization of the contemporary era. Its roots lay in the Middle East but today it is both a local and global movement. Under the slogan that "Islam is the solution" the Muslim Brotherhood and its ideologues have impacted on the political evolution of the region. The Muslim Brotherhood is variously regarded as a true force for moderation among Islamists or a facade behind which lies a terroristic fundamentalist threat which could undermine global security agendas. The Arab Spring has brought the Muslim Brotherhood to the fore of regional politics once more. The face of the Brotherhood and its ambitions are slowly being realised as state-based power is re-ordered across the Middle East.
The book will examine the genesis and evolution of the Muslim Brotherhood in the Middle East with chapters devoted to specific cases and localities where the Brotherhood and its ideas have made and are making important impacts on society, the state and politics. Within these chapters the author will assess in detail the dynamics of particular themes of Islamist politics associated with the Brotherhood such as democracy, equality, pan-Islamism, radicalism, violence, reform, the Palestine issue and gender. This will reveal an evolutionary trend within the movement since its founding in Egypt in 1928 to its manifestation as the largest Sunni Islamist movement in the Middle East in the 21st century. Drawing on a wide range of sources and interviews with the leaders and cadres this book presents an evolving standpoint of a newly resurgent movement that is significantly organised to take the opportunities for power and electoral competition offered by the Arab Spring.
The book will also question whether the Muslim Brotherhood can demonstrate to its sceptics that an accommodation with democracy and the presence of a secular trend within the region can be made. The book will also be the first study to deal with the ascension to power, through the ballot box, of the Muslim Brotherhood (including in its localised forms) in the Palestinian territories, Tunisia, Egypt and elsewhere to analyse the impact of this in terms of Western policy debates on whether and how they should engage with this manifestation of political Islam.