A Global Idea outlines how youth—as shown by the Arab Spring uprisings and subsequent state responses—became a prominent social and political category during the first two decades of the twenty-first century in the Middle East. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork, interview data, and textual analysis, Mayssoun Sukarieh explains that the spread of youth as an important category is linked to the operation of a "global youth development complex," a diverse transnational network of state, private sector, civil society, and international development aid organizations that worked through key urban areas such as Washington, DC, Amman, and Dubai. In its analysis of the arrival, extension, and embedding of the youth development complex in the Middle East during this period, A Global Idea addresses a broader question that is of global and not just regional concern. How are certain ideas that are central to the working and reproduction of global capitalism able to travel the world so that they are found virtually everywhere?
Mayssoun Sukarieh is Reader in the Department of International Development at King's College London. She is the coauthor of Youth Rising?