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The Fourth Ordeal


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Table of Contents

Prologue; Introduction; 1. The Society of the Muslim Brothers; 2. The Second Founding (1968-1981); 3. The Rise of the Vanguard (1981-1991); 4. Brotherhood Incorporated (1991-2001); 5. Struggle for Leadership (2001-2011); 6. Revolution, Rise and Fall (2011-2013); 7. The Beginning of the Fourth Ordeal (2013-2018); Conclusion; Epilogue.

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A history of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt based on first-person interviews with Brotherhood rank-and-file members.

About the Author

Victor J. Willi completed his doctorate at the University of Oxford and his Master at the University of Zurich. He is currently employed by the World Economic Forum in Geneva, Switzerland, focusing on the geopolitics and economic of the current Middle East.


'This superb oral history offers a forensic analysis of the Brotherhood's far from inevitable rise and fall from power in Egypt. Brothers are presented neither as victims nor villains, rather as social actors forced to make difficult choices in unprecedented circumstances. With enviable scholarly impartiality, The Fourth Ordeal is history at its best.' Hazem Kandil, Cambridge University
'A highly readable account of the Muslim Brotherhood's modern history, based on a well of primary sources and interviews. Focusing on factional struggles between old-school leaders and younger reformists, the book offers an insightful interpretation of the background to the failed Mursi presidency and the violent movement's suppression in 2013.' Brynjar Lia, University of Oslo
'A compelling and dramatic account of the rise of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood from suppressed opposition movement to the pinnacle of presidential power, only to be overthrown by the military in 2013 and banned as a terrorist organisation. An outstanding book, drawing on extensive interviews of Muslim brothers and their opponents, Victor J. Willi tells the story of the Muslim Brothers in their own words and as he himself witnessed events in the 2010s. The best book available on the most influential Islamist movement in the world.' Eugene Rogan, University of Oxford

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