Observing (the debate on) sectarianism: On conceptualizing, grasping and explaining sectarian politics in a new Middle East

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Abstract

To what extent has the study of sectarianism in the Middle East made any progress in the first decade after the Arab uprisings? Based on an analysis of three aspects of the study of sectarianism–on how to conceptualize, grasp and explain sectarianism–the article shows that the sectarianism debate hardly has provided much certainty, agreement or any firm conclusions. However, the study of sectarianism has progressed in terms of greater conceptual, methodological and theoretical sophistication. Thereby, the study of sectarianism resembles a broader trend in Middle East Studies towards moving beyond the classic ‘trenches’ in the Area Studies Controversy.

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Valbjørn, M. (2021). Observing (the debate on) sectarianism: On conceptualizing, grasping and explaining sectarian politics in a new Middle East. Mediterranean Politics, 26(5), 612–634. https://doi.org/10.1080/13629395.2021.1889299

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