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Synopsis

The problems in the Middle East run deeper than dictatorship. Inspired by the popular uprisings that overthrew the presidents of Tunisia and Egypt, Arabs across the Middle East are demanding change. But achieving real freedom will involve more than the removal of a few dictators. Looking beyond the turmoil reported on our TV screens, Guardian journalist Brian Whitaker examines the 'freedom deficit' that affects Arabs in their daily lives: their struggles against corruption, discrimination and bureaucracy, and the stifling authoritarianism that pervades homes, schools and mosques as well as presidential palaces. Drawing on a wealth of new research and wide-ranging interviews, Whitaker analyses the views of people living in the region and argues that in order to achieve peace, prosperity and full participation in today's global economy, Arabs should embrace not only political change but far-reaching social and cultural change as well. 'A passionate call for political and social change in Arab countries' Jeremy Bowen 'A call to arms for Arab citizens' International Affairs 'A lively, highly readable and illuminating survey of the countless things that are wrong with the Middle East today' Avi Shlaim, Guardian 'This is a writer willing to rattle a few cages... Detailed and well-documented' Huffington Post '[Should] be required reading by Arab elites from the Atlantic to the Gulf' Patrick Seale, Al Hayat 'Whitaker spares no criticism of the region's governments' Egypt Today 'Outstanding and credible' Jordan Times







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