This book offers a thematic analysis of the phenomenon of revolution. The twentieth century has been witness to a number of historic revolutions, beginning with the Mexican and the Russian revolutions at the turn of the century and leading up to the Iranian and Nicaragua revolutions in the 1970s and 1980s. Despite their fundamental differences, these and the revolutions before them are characterized by parallel developments and processes. The focus of this book is to discern those social and political dynamics that bring about revolutions, determine their nature and overall direction, and in turn facilitate the emergence and success of revolutionary leaders and their attempts at institutionalizing their newly-won powers.
Kamrava adds valuable insights into prevalent notions and theories concerning revolutions. There are, the author argues, several conditions necessary for the appearance and success of revolutionary movements. They include a weak state structure, a mobilizable society, and specific groups whose aim it is to overthrow the political system. Once the leaders of the revolution have been determined, they try to institutionalize their powers, in both the post-revolutionary state and society.
About the Author:
MEHRAN KAMRAVA holds a Ph.D. in Social and Political Sciences from King's College, Cambridge University and is currently assistant professor of international studies at Rhodes College. He is the author of Revolution in Iran: The Roots of Turmoil, Politics and Society in the Third World and The Political History of Modern Iran: From Tribalism to Theocracy (Praeger, 1992).