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Toby Matthiesen

Toby Matthiesen

Sir Adam Roberts Senior Research Fellow in the International Relations of the Middle East
St Antony's College

I am Senior Research Fellow in the International Relations of the Middle East. In the past, I have held fellowships at Pembroke College, Cambridge, and at the London School of Economics and Political Science. I am the author of Sectarian Gulf: Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and the Arab Spring That Wasn’t (Stanford University Press, 2013), and The Other Saudis: Shiism, Dissent and Sectarianism (Cambridge University Press, 2015). My research interests include the modern history of the Gulf States, Sunni-Shia relations and the legacies of the Cold War in the Middle East. I teach on the MPhil in Modern Middle Eastern Studies and MSc in Modern Middle Eastern Studies.


Saudi Arabia and the Cold War’ in: Madawi al-Rasheed (ed.), Salman’s Legacy: The Dilemmas of a New Era in Saudi Arabia (London: Hurst & Co, 2018), 217-233.

Red Arabia: Anti-Colonialism, the Cold War, and the Long Sixties in the Gulf States’, in: Chen Jian, Martin Klimke, Masha Kirasirova, Mary Nolan, Marilyn Young, Joanna Waley-Cohen, (eds.), Routledge Handbook of the Global Sixties (London: Routledge, 2018), 94-105.

Sectarianization as Securitization: Identity Politics and Counter-Revolution in Bahrain’, in: Nader Hashemi and Danny Postel (eds.), Sectarianization: Mapping the New Politics of the Middle East (London: Hurst & Co, 2017), 199-214.

Renting the Casbah: Gulf States’ Foreign Policy towards North Africa since the Arab Uprisings’, in Kristian Coates Ulrichsen (ed.), The Changing Security Dynamics of the Persian Gulf (London: Hurst & Co, 2017), 43-59.

Government and Opposition in the Middle East: The 1993 Negotiations Between the Saudi Shia Opposition and King Fahd’ in: Gabriele vom Bruck and Charles Tripp (eds.), Precarious Belonging: Ways of being Shiʿi in non-Shia worlds (London: The Centre for Academic Shi‘a Studies, 2017), 377-417.

The Iranian Revolution and Sunni Political Islam’, Project on Middle East Political Science, 2017.

‘Saudi Arabia’ in: Shadi Hamid and William McCants (eds.), Rethinking Political Islam (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2017), 118-131.

Transnational diffusion between Arab Shia movements‘, POMEPS (2016).

Transnational Identities after the Arab Uprisings‘ in: Narbone, Luigi and Martin Lestra (ed.), The Gulf Monarchies beyond the Arab spring: changes and challenges (Florence: European University Institute, 2015), 32-37.

Conservative Monarchies in a Transforming Region’, in: Valeria Talbot (ed.), The Rising Gulf: The New Ambitions of the Gulf Monarchies (Milan: Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionale, 2015), 13-26.

The domestic sources of Saudi foreign policy: Islamists and the state in the wake of the Arab Uprisings (Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution, 2015).

Shiʿi Historians in a Wahhabi State: Identity Entrepreneurs and the Politics of Local Historiography in Saudi Arabia’, International Journal of Middle East Studies 47, no. 1 (2015), 25-45.

Migration, Minorities and Radical Networks: Labour Movements and Opposition Groups in Saudi Arabia, 1950-1975‘ in: International Review of Social History 59, no. 3 (Autumn 2014), 473-504.

Mysticism, Migration and Clerical Networks: Ahmad al-Ahsaʾi and the Shaykhis of al-Ahsa, Kuwait and Basra‘ in: Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs (2014).

Centre–Periphery Relations and the Emergence of a Public Sphere in Saudi Arabia: The Municipal Elections in the Eastern Province, 1954–1960‘ in: British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies (2014).

'The Local and the Transnational in the Arab Uprisings: The Protests in Saudi Arabia’s Eastern Province', in May Seikaly and Khawla Matar (eds.), The Silent Revolution: The Arab Spring and the Gulf States (Berlin: Gerlach Press, 2014), 105-143.