Our directory of things of interest

University Directory

THE STATE OF THE MIDDLE EAST: 3rd Edition by Dan Smith

THE STATE OF THE MIDDLE EAST: 3rd Edition by Dan Smith
01 Feb
2016
What exactly are we talking about when we say ‘the Middle East’? This, and many other fundamental questions, are answered by Dan Smith in this latest edition of The State of the Middle East Atlas

Because of its subject matter, this is the kind of tome that becomes out of date as soon as the ink is dry. However, now in its third edition, the atlas has been revised with new analyses of the region since the Arab Spring began in 2011 as well as the latest on the Israel-Palestine conflict, the refugee crisis and foreign fighters in Iraq and Syria. Smith, cartographer and director of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, has kept up with the compelling changes and complicated dynamics of Middle Eastern politics. ‘Today the condition of the Middle East is as bad as it has ever been,’ Smith writes, ‘dangerous for the people of the region and the region’s neighbours.’

The arenas of conflict are covered in judicious clarity. Smith uses straightforward chronology supported by accessible maps and graphics as the backbone to his analysis, while also giving careful consideration to gender relations, colonial impact, religion and global climate. ‘In November 2010 China suffered a once-in-a-century drought in its wheat-growing eastern region,’ he writes. ‘This had serious economic impact on Egypt – the world’s largest wheat importer. In 2011, soaring food prices were one reason Egyptians took the streets in frustration at Mubarak’s regime.’ In an ever more volatile Middle East, such nuanced analyses are invaluable.

THE STATE OF THE MIDDLE EAST ATLAS: 3rd Edition by Dan Smith; New Internationalist; £14.99; paperback 

This review was published in the February 2016 edition of Geographical magazine.

NEVER MISS A STORY - Follow Geographical on Social

Want to stay up to date with breaking Geographical stories? Join the thousands following us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and stay informed about the world.

More articles in REVIEWS...

Exhibitions

The largest collection of treasures from Tutankhamun’s tomb ever to…

Films

Fresh from an award-winning screening at the Sundance Film Festival…

Films

The inside story about The Cave – the first feature…

Books

by Laura Waters • Affirm Press (via bookdepository.com) • £16.61 (paperback)

Books

by John Halpern, MD and David Blistein • Hachette Book…

Books

by Gavin Thurston • Seven Dials • £16.99 (hardback)

Books

by Jon Gertner • Icon Books • £18.99 (hardback)

Books

by Justin Marozzi • Allen Lane • £25 (hardback)

Exhibitions

The Great Animal Orchestra combines the audio recordings of bioacoustics…

Films

Hotel Mumbai shares a true story of heroism in the…

Films

A moving coming-of-age story about a young black man’s struggle…

Books

by Raja Shehadeh • Profile Books • £14.99 (hardback)

Books

by Caroline Crampton • Granta Books • £14.99 (hardback)

Books

by Alastair Humphreys • Harper Collins • £14.99 (hardback)

Books

by Ben Aitken • Icon Books • £12.99 (paperback)

Books

by Edward O Wilson • Allen Lane • £17.99 (paperback)

Books

by David Eimer • Bloomsbury • £20 (hardback)

Films

The uplifting story of a remarkable man who sailed the…