Effects of Modernization and Globalization on Values Change in the Arab World

  • Malek Abduljaber Saginaw Valley State University, Ann Arbor, USA


This paper argues that social transformation processes generate shifts in public opinion among the public. More specifically, increasing rates of modernization and globalization in the Arab world over the past half century have led to a moving away from religion, tradition, and ethnocentrism to embracing more secular, liberal, and egalitarian values. Ordinary citizens in today’s Arab world are more tolerant towards non-Muslims, Americans, and other Westerners more than ever before. They support recognizing Israel as a state at a rate previously unprecedented in the region. Arabs are politically, socially, and culturally more liberal than they have been in the twentieth century. Evidence from the World Values Survey and Arab Barometer clearly convey this observable value change in the region. Underlying causes for this change are arguably due to macro, mezzo, and micro-level changes in peoples’ lives resulting from increased modernization and globalization compared to earlier periods. This confirms earlier findings from Western Europe and North America, which propose that social transformation processes, yield predictable changes in values among mass publics.

Author Biography

Malek Abduljaber, Saginaw Valley State University, Ann Arbor, USA

Malek Abduljaber, PhD, is professor at Saginaw Valley State University, Ann Arbor, USA. He is a researcher on Middle Eastern Politics. His work considers the interaction of social transformation processes such as globalization and modernization and political ideology. He is also the author of numerous articles on public opinion change in the Arab World. Dr. Abduljaber holds a doctorate in political science from Wayne State University.


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How to Cite
Abduljaber, M. (2018). Effects of Modernization and Globalization on Values Change in the Arab World. Changing Societies & Personalities, 2(2), 161-182. doi:10.15826/csp.2018.2.2.035