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The Politics of Nationalism in Modern Iran by Ali M. Ansari

The Politics of Nationalism in Modern Iran

Part of the Cambridge Middle East Studies Series


The Politics of Nationalism in Modern Iran by Ali M. Ansari

The first full-length study of Iranian nationalism in nearly five decades, this sophisticated and challenging book by the distinguished historian Ali M. Ansari explores the idea of nationalism in the creation of modern Iran. It does so by considering the broader developments in national ideologies that took place following the emergence of the European Enlightenment and showing how these ideas were adopted by a non-European state. Ansari charts a course through twentieth-century Iran, analysing the growth of nationalistic ideas and their impact on the state and demonstrating the connections between historiographical and political developments. In so doing, he shows how Iran's different regimes manipulated ideologies of nationalism and collective historical memory to suit their own ends. Drawing on hitherto untapped sources, the book concludes that it was the revolutionary developments and changes that occurred during the first half of the twentieth century that paved the way for later radicalisation.


'This excellent work asks these basic questions: what is an Iranian; and how has Iranian identity been shaped over the past 100 years? ... an insightful discussion of issues of nationalism in modern Iran.'
Grant Farr, Middle East Media and Book Reviews (membr

About the Author

Ali M. Ansari is a Professor of Iranian History at the University of St Andrews. His many publications include Iran under Ahmadinejad (2008), Iran, Islam and Democracy: The Politics of Managing Change, 2nd edition (2006) and Modern Iran since 1921: The Pahlavis and After (2003).

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Book Info

Publication date

8th October 2012


Ali M. Ansari

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Cambridge University Press


342 pages


20th century history: c 1900 to c 2000
21st century history: from c 2000 -



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