The Iranian Revolution And Its Multiple Contexts

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The Iranian Revolution and Its Multiple Contexts


Revolutions are complex phenomena. They are structured in the societies that give birth to them. They are characterized by unexpected changes in the revolutionary process itself. Their long-term consequences can possibly only be understood in their totality after generations. In the following, the focus will be on the rise of new Islamic "nationalist"- based political ideology with related social forces as a result of structural changes under the modern authoritarian regime of the Pahlavi Shahs (1941-1979).

The Iranian Islamic Revolution was one of the most complex revolutions of the twentieth century. Never before had a modern revolution of such depth taken place since the disintegration of the Islamic Empires of Ottoman, Persia and Mughal-India.

The movement, under the leadership of the ulama (Islamic clergy) and their Islamic ideology and traditional religious institutions such as mosques, allowed the leaders to assert themselves against one of the strongest regimes of the Third World with a distinguished but repressive state apparatus (military and secret service). In 1978, millions of Iranians demonstrated to put an end to the secular authoritarian state of the Shah. (Berberian, pp. 261-292)

A comprehensive literature exists on the causes and nature of the Iranian Islamic revolution. Still, a number of controversial issues have not yet been clarified completely. Also the theorizing of the revolution has still to be regenerated.

Before The Revolution

The Qajars dynasty: Persia under Foreign Influence

The century Persia is controlled by the dynasty of the Qajars, under the reign of Mozzafaral Din Shah. He is succeeded by Mohammad Ali Shah. In 1906, it expands a Parliament and a Constitution. In 1909, due to its sprains to this constitution the Shah replaced by his brother Ahmad Shah Qajar. (Berberian, pp. 261-292)

The Acquisition of Power by Reza Khan

In 1917, Britain intervenes and passes through Persia to go fight in the Russian Revolution. Reza Khan, an officer of military force of Persia takes advantage of the presence of US and in 1921 causes a coup, overthrowing Ahmad Shah, the last of the Qajars and in 4 years he become the head of State. In 1925, with a special meeting of the Parliament, he was declared Shah and takes the name of Reza Shah Pahlavi.

The new sovereign focuses on the economic growth of the country. It encourages the industrialization, built railways, and founded the University of Tehran. It sends hundreds of people in Europe to be educated. However, Shah's autocratic style creates the opposition, especially among clerics who demands opposition to the reforms in the constitution.


Influences Settler and Russians

 The Russian and English influence is strong in the region. To the South, England operates the Iranian oil. To the North, the Russia occupies the provinces, will make all (Tajikistan 5 and the Azerbaijan in particular will be integrated to the Russian and then Soviet empire). Reza tries to limit the influence of English and Russian forces on the Iran and to do this the Shah has hired modernization plans, German engineers, Italians and French. This is what will lead to many problems, ...
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