Adaptation strategies of Islamist movements

The Prayer Mat, Yemen

Long repressed, banned, and exiled, many Islamist movements and parties across the Middle East and North Africa witnessed a moment of electoral success after the 2011 uprisings. Since then, their fates have varied widely. Some have made significant compromises to stay in power, others have ostensibly separated their religious and political efforts, while others have been repressed more brutally than before or have fragmented beyond recognition. What accounts for these actors’ different adaptation strategies and divergent outcomes? Earlier this year, the Project on Middle East Political Science brought together a dozen top scholars for our 4th Annual workshop on Islamist politics to address these questions. Their excellent essays are available individually below and collectively as POMEPS Studies 26, available now as a free PDF.

Understanding repression-adaptation nexus in Islamist movementsKhalil al-Anani, Doha Institute for Graduate Studies, Qatar

Why Exclusion and Repression of Moderate Islamists Will Be CounterproductiveJillian Schwedler, Hunter College, CUNY 

Islamists After the ‘Arab Spring’: What’s the Right Research Question and Comparison Group, and Why Does It Matter?Elizabeth R. Nugent, Princeton University

The Islamist voter base during the Arab Spring: More ideology than protest?Eva Wegner, University College Dublin

When Islamist Parties (and Women) Govern: Strategy, Authenticity and Women’s RepresentationLindsay J. Benstead, Portland State University

Exit, Voice, and Loyalty Under the Islamic StateMara Revkin, Yale University and Ariel I. Ahram, Virginia Tech 

The Muslim Brotherhood Between Party and MovementSteven Brooke, The University of Louisville

A Government of the Opposition: How Moroccan Islamists’ Dual Role Contributes to their Electoral SuccessQuinn Mecham, Brigham Young University 

The Cost of Inclusion: Ennahda and Tunisia’s Political TransitionMonica Marks, University of Oxford

Regime Islam, State Islam, and Political Islam: The Past and Future ContestNathan J. Brown, George Washington University

Middle East regimes are using ‘moderate’ Islam to stay in powerAnnelle Sheline, George Washington University

Reckoning with a Fractured Islamist Landscape in YemenStacey Philbrick Yadav, Hobart and William Smith Colleges

The Lumpers and the Splitters: Two very different policy approaches on dealing with IslamismMarc Lynch, George Washington University