Custom «How Did Colonialism Affect the Arab World?» Sample Essay
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Nowadays, the Arab world is going through a severe crisis. The crisis is associated with the inefficient, backward economy, low levels of education, and high levels of corruption. All of the above mentioned problems were accumulating for decades and led to the explosion. It is obvious that the Arab world is not able to cope with its current turmoil without external assistance. The crisis caused by the current difficulties and complications is also a result of colonialism that affects the Arab world greatly.
Power and Politics in Post-Colonial Arab Muslim World
Currently, the Arab Muslim world is going through a severe crisis in its history. The literature reveals this crisis is associated with inefficient backward economy, low levels of education, and high levels of corruption. Baldinetti (43) believes that colonialism in the eastern countries has greatly contributed to the development of capitalism and largely broke the traditional structure of the eastern states. However, the process of modernization and westernization was carried out only in the modern era. The development of capitalism and the changes in the former colonies and their modernization have significant differences.
The Arab Muslim world was used to hire Western firms to address the problems with which they could not cope. They were not able to independently develop and universal plight has become the norm for most of them; in some of these countries, the situation, in general, was catastrophic. For the Arabs, who were always proud of their culture and erstwhile victories, this humiliating situation was unbearable. They had to justify their misery, and they found the explanation for their defeat, failures, and helplessness as consequences of colonialism (Said 100).
The painful failure, the more spawns conspiracy theories aimed to explain and justify it. A typical example is a survey that is commissioned by the newspaper The Washington Post. According to it, 82% of Syrians are convinced that the Islamic state was established by the United States and by some powerful dark forces, whose aim was to harm the Arabs (Valassopoulos 86). However, every fifth respondent supported this idea believing that its structure and ideology is able to return to the Arabs its former power and glory (Baldinetti 58). Moreover, tribal codes of the Arab society have not lost their popularity today. Many urbanized Arab families in big cities still remain committed to patriarchal clan relations that are barely fitting into the conditions of the modern world.
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Modernity and the Arab World
The findings reveal that modernization had an external influence on Arab society without changing its nature (Said 105). The Arab world is consuming Western goods and products, but it does not bring a real change in the society’s structure, and the sociocultural environment of Arab society has not undergone fundamental changes. The Arab world is still based on the backbone of family. This commitment to the clan and tribal separation prevents the penetration of a democratic culture, coming from the West. Still, as in the patriarchal times, each clan or family aim to gain the power and influence to strengthen its position. The findings assert that instead of building a modern system of equitable, inclusive political participation and cooperation, a clan and tribal relations system pushes from their midst educated elite and approves a system of family alliances and corruption (Valassopoulos 88).
Starting from the middle of the 19th century, Arabs have developed a certain type of relationships with the West based on the anti-colonial behaviors. These relationships became more and more powerful and acquired different forms, such as liberalism, state capitalism, and Islamism (Baldinetti 61). All of these ideologies pursued one goal, i.e. to gain political independence, unite with all Arabs, achieve modernity and social development, as well as reach cultural authenticity (Baldinetti 62). These approaches present some of the dominant discourses of modernity, modernization, and globalization in the post-colonial Arab world.
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Historically, Arabs have developed a specific type of consciousness. Thus, the cult of honor of the community and the desire of its members to prevent shame lies at the heart of the behavioral norms of the Arab community. Many studies assert that this approach prevents more productive behavioral codes, leading to an open and prosperous society (Said 114). Arab countries were forced to respond to the increase in global integration processes, the formation of a single information field, the possibility of which can be fully implemented by only following the democratic model of political system with the freedom of cultural exchange.
Liberalism and Nationalism in the Post-Colonial Arab World
After the Western colonial domination, the Arab world has faced the intensification of movements of political Islam that particularly increased in the changed geopolitical situation in the region, as a result of the collapse of the USSR (Valassopoulos 92). All these and other important events left a definite imprint on the evolution of modern social and political thought in the Arab world and the behavioral stereotype of the Arab people. At the same time, throughout the 20th century, two major trends in the development of Arab public consciousness were developed, such as a traditional Muslim ideology and secular thought. At the turn of 20th- 21st centuries, the development of social and political consciousness in the Arab Middle East became the next deterministic factors.
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On the one hand, it is deeply rooted in the mass consciousness of the Arab and Islamic ideas of inter-Arab solidarity and the experience of a thousand years of opposition to the Christian world, and the historical memory of the victory over the Crusaders and the bitterness of defeat in the face of European colonial expansion (Baldinetti 73). On the other hand, the processes of modernization and westernization that started in the 19th century had a serious impact on the attitudes of different social groups and strata of Arab society. It was caused by the fact that, in spite of the unity of the Arab world, every Arab country was characterized by its own history, ethnic and religious composition of the population, its national traditions and customs.
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