chapter  2
THE FORMATION OF MODERN SYRIA
Pages 30

This chapter explains the forces which shaped the emergence of a precarious statehood in modern Syria, fatally handicapped from the outset by its artificial imposed boundaries, the thin social base of its “traditional” ruling elites and the late start of its capitalist development. It also assesses how the social change and political conflict of the 1950s-agrarian crisis, class conflict, the radicalisation of the army-destabilized the fragile Syrian state and propelled the rise of the Ba’th Party with its alternative state-building project.