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A Social Revolution


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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments Note on Transliteration Introduction 1. Can an Oil State Be a Welfare State? 2. Seeing like a King: Welfare Policy as State-Building Strategy in the Pahlavi Monarchy 3. Creating a Martyrs' Welfare State: 1979, War, and the Survival of the Islamic Republic 4. The Revolution Embedded: Rural Transformations and the Demographic Miracle 5. Development and Distinction: Welfare-State Expansion and the Politics of the New Middle Class 6. Lineages of the Iranian Welfare State Conclusion: Development Contradictions through the Lens of Welfare Politics Notes Bibliography Index

About the Author

Kevan Harris is Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of California, Los Angeles.


"Harris literally wrote the book on politics and welfare in Iran." * Foreign Policy *
"This empirically rich study draws on Harris' extensive fieldwork in Iran and uses welfare policy as a prism through which to view the country's transition from the shah's dictatorship to the now nearly 40-year-old theocracy of the Islamic Republic. . . . If Harris is correct, the Islamic Republic contains the seeds of its own transformation." -- John Waterbury * Foreign Affairs *
"A Social Revolution acts as a much-needed corrective to a lot of the academic and policy literature on contemporary Iran, which tends to view the country's political and social geography in binary terms: namely, a top-heavy, ideological, and oppressive state versus a resistant, cosmopolitan society." * The Middle East Journal *
"Kevan Harris has stepped forward with a reasoned and well-researched presentation of the theocracy as a traditional welfare state." * Survival: Global Politics and Strategy *
"A Social Revolution acts as a much-needed corrective to a lot of the academic and policy literature on contemporary Iran." * The Middle East Journal *
"Harris offers a first-rate book on Iran" * CHOICE *
"A Social Revolution shows that the Islamic Republic relied on welfare provision as the main source of state making, and this is a remarkable finding. I contend that this book is a must read for students of welfare studies, the Middle East, and social movements." * American Journal of Sociology *

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