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Volume :47 Issue : 3 2019      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

The Shia Status in Kuwait: An Analytical Study of Political Attitudes from the Establishment of the Emirate to the Constitutional Era

Auther : Hasan A. Johar Hamed H. Al-Abdullah

This study aims to review and analyze the intellectual, social and political backgrounds in the Kuwaiti Shia status during various historical stages, from the establishment of the Emirate of Kuwait in 1756 to the period of British protection in 1899, and ending with the constitutional era in 1961. The implications of those factors are used for interpreting these attitudes and practical stands of this social component. The study is based on assessing the internal dimensions and external influences on the Shia political perspectives, especially with regard to the sectarian atmosphere surrounding Kuwait and its local projections on one hand, and the concept of Kuwaiti citizenship in its legal context and its political applications on the other. This evaluation includes the driving forces of Shia currents and groups in their political demands and priorities. The mechanisms to achieve such goals will be discussed through the constitutional authorities such as the elected National Assembly and the various civil social institutions. The Shia's relationship with the political forces and other community components in addition to the powerful ruling authority is evaluated throughout different historical eras. The study concludes with a focus on the current political scene, especially in the wake of the so-called Arab Spring and its demands for freedom, political reform and promotion of popular participation in decision-making. However, several sectarian practices emerged along with these revolutions, such as rigid religious discourse including terrorist operations. This study attempts to monitor the direct and indirect effects of these new transformations on the Kuwaiti arena and the Shia's positions in this regard. The paper concludes with the reflections of this on the requirements of peaceful coexistence as a platform for political and security stability in a small country located in a turbulent geographical territory liable to explosion.
Keywords: Kuwait, Shia, Political Participation, Sectarianism.

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Aug 09, 2020

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