FROM PAN‒ARABISM TO ISLAMISM: HOW MODERNITY FAILED TO REDEFINE COLLECTIVE IDENTITY
This paper claims that modernity failed in the Arab world because of its internal structure which affected the group structure by pushing people to grow in isolation from each other, while wealth was polarized. The weak, the sick, the destitute, and the illiterate found religion to be the sole refuge for emotional comfort, and the sole mechanism to provide hope in a messianic justice and equality. Beyond political perceptions and attitudes, the failure of modernity to reshape the Arab political culture in the Middle East had triggered a shift of loyalties from Pan-Arabism to Pan-Islamism. This failure of modernity also spawned a brand of religious identity whereby political loyalties shifted from the secular Arab governance to Islamic governance. Islamism superseded Pan-Arabism as a drive for collective identity, and as an impetus for structure mobilization; a process still under development.