New book on Arab youths offers hope

Juan Cole, who writes the Informed Content blog about the history and context of developments in the Middle East has a new book out this month, The New Arabs: How the Millennial Generation is Changing the Middle East.

The New Arabs by Juan Cole

A New York Times review by Michiko Kakutani says that the book is “at its most illuminating when it takes the reader inside the youth movements in Tunisia, Egypt and Libya, showing us how activists used technology and social media to amplify their message and connect with like-minded citizens across the region. Although this phenomenon has already been widely covered by Western media, Mr. Cole chronicles it in fascinating detail here, recounting the stories of prominent dissidents and their often pioneering use of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and cellphone technology to network and organize.”

However, the review says, “Cole does not deal here with the mastery of new media demonstrated by terrorist groups like ISIS, whose current sweep across northern Iraq has been accompanied by a sophisticated propaganda campaign conducted with Tweets, harrowing videos and photoshopped images.”

The relative youth of the Arab population in the United States is one of the subjects covered in 100 Questions and Answers about Arab Americans

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