Международная аналитика (Dec 2020)

Arab World in 2010s: Metanarrative Games

  • V. A. Kuznetsov

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 11, no. 3
pp. 95 – 112


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The article is devoted to the analysis of the socio-political transformation of the Arab world in the 2010s. The author analyses its changes through the concept of neo-modernity, which was already developed in a number of his earlier publications. The key thesis is the idea of a new turn of society to metanarratives, or “big stories” after postmodern relativism led to attempts to abandon them. In the first part of the article, the problem of metanarratives is considered at the theoretical level. The author proposes a methodology for studying socio-political processes and determines the influence of the condition of neo-modernity on political reality. The second part of the article highlights the main modern (liberal, left, nationalist, conservative) and premodern (tribal, Islamist) “big stories”. These “stories” determine the content and nature of public and political life in the Arab world in the 2010s and problematize new aspects of social relations. It shows how the actualization of metanarratives affected the course of the political process in Arab countries, as well as the organization of political systems, building new relations between societies and states. The third part of the article is devoted to the analysis of international political processes in the region. The influence of “big stories” on the configuration of the regional subsystem, armed conflicts, the composition of key actors, the specifics of their strategies, their identity and the identity of the region as a whole is revealed. In conclusion, the author shows a possibility of gradual harmonization of the system of regional relations in the case of the formation of hypertext, which makes it possible for the coexistence of actors guided by different narrative strategies.