Saudi Arabia

Political Structure and Reforms

By Jajati K. Pattnaik

Tracing the historical background of Saudi Arabia, this book analyzes political developments from a theoretical perspective. The structural and operational matrix of the Saudi's monarchical system- as it is caught between authoritarian clientelism and democratic symbolism-is dissected. Beset with a number of challenges, the al-Saud regime has allowed controlled democratic space to contain the simmering opposition inside the Kingdom, drawing its legitimacy from religion and rentier politics. In this context, the Saudi experiment with democracy takes a departure from the universal principles of democracy (popular participation, individual liberty, justice, equity, transparency, and accountability) and does not truly refract these principles through the prism of Islamic values. Moreover, the limited democratic space created by the Saudi regime has been reinforced by regularization of the popular participatory process to build and consolidate structural mechanisms-Majlis al-Shura (legislature), and the partially elected Municipal Councils and National Dialogue Sessions-for according institutional legitimacy to the al-Saud regime. This book will help the reader appreciate the complex realities of Saudi politics and comprehend the challenges that inhibit the growth of a democratic system in the desert kingdom. [Subject: Politics, Middle East Studies]


Publication Date: 2/28/2017
Format: Cloth
ISBN: 9788177084375