The Muslim Brotherhood and the West: A Discussion with Dr. Martyn Frampton

On May 10, 2018, the Program on Extremism hosted a discussion with Dr. Martyn Frampton of London's Queen Mary University about his new book The Muslim Brotherhood and the West: A History of Enmity and Engagement (Harvard University Press, 2018). 

Ever since the creation of the Brotherhood, its relationship with the West has been the subject of speculation and conspiracy theories. In a major contribution to extant literature on this relationship, Dr. Frampton draws on a rich seam of empirical evidence collected in archives and libraries in Cairo, London and Washington, D.C., to explore the chaotic evolution of relations between the world's leading Islamist organization and the Western powers that have shaped the Middle East.

Dr. Frampton's book charts how the British and then the Americans struggled to understand the character of the Brotherhood - and often viewed it through the lens of other concerns: the struggle to preserve Empire, fears about the challenge posed by revolutionary Arab nationalism and Communism, the effort to promote democracy in the Middle East, and concerns about terrorism. His work also offers critical insight into the key perceptions that informed diplomatic responses to the Arab Spring.

Dr. Frampton was joined on the panel by the Program on Extremism's Director Dr. Lorenzo Vidino, and Dr. Mohamed-Ali Adraoui. Dr. Vidino is the author of The New Muslim Brotherhood in the West (Columbia University Press, 2010) and one of the leading authorities on the movement's establishment and evolution in the West. Dr. Adraoui is the Marie Sklodowska Curie Fellow at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He is currently conducting a project which analyzes the history of U.S. foreign policy towards the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood.