The European Union and the Arab Spring: Promoting Democracy and Human Rights in the Middle East, edited by Joel Peters, analyzes the response of the European Union to recent uprisings in the Middle East. The past year has witnessed a wave of popular uprisings across North Africa and the Middle East which the Western media dubbed “the Arab Spring.” Demanding greater freedoms, political reform, and human rights, the protesters swept away many of the region’s authoritarian autocratic regimes. The events of the Arab Spring have been truly historic. They led to profound changes in the domestic order of Middle Eastern states and societies and impacted the international politics of the region. Additionally, these events necessitate a comprehensive reappraisal by the United States and most notably by the EU in their relations with the states and peoples of the region.
This timely collection brings together nine leading authorities on European foreign policy and the Middle East, and investigates three central questions: What role did the European Union play in promoting democracy and human rights in the countries of North Africa and the Middle East? How did the EU respond to the uprisings of the Arab street? What challenges is Europe now facing in its relations with the region? Peters’ The European Union and the Arab Spring is at the forefront of scholarship on this historic socio-political shift in the Middle East and its wider implications for the West.