The Bridge Over the River Jordan: Islam, Ethnicity and Electoral Rule Manipulation



Date and Time

October 25, 2006 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM



RSVP required by 5PM October 24.


Encina Ground Floor Conference Room

David Patel is a PhD candidate in Stanford's Dept of Political Science and,

beginning in Fall 2007, an Assistant Professor of Government at Cornell

University. He is currently a pre-doctoral fellow with the Center on

Democracy, Development, and the Rule of Law at Stanford University.

Mr. Patel will speak about changes in the communal support base of the

Jordanian Islamic Movement. He asks, why did a flourising Islamist movement,

capable of transcending Jordan's communal boundaries and shifting the broad

axes of social division, instead transform into an ethnic party in the

1990s? He argues the Transjordanian-dominated government, threatened by

Islamists' cross-communal appeal, purposely exploits communal divisions

within the Islamic Movement by engineering electoral rules, gerrymandering

districts, and provoking communally-divisive crises with the Movement. These

changes lead the Islamic Movement to increasingly cater to

Palestinian-Jordanian voters, which preserves national origin as the most

salient cleavage in Jordanian society.