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Arab Spring in EgyptRevolution and Beyond (A Tahrir Studies Edition)$
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Bahgat Korany and Rabab El-Mahdi

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9789774165368

Published to Cairo Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.5743/cairo/9789774165368.001.0001

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The Protesting Middle East

The Protesting Middle East

(p.7) 1 The Protesting Middle East
Arab Spring in Egypt

Bahgat Korany

Rabab El-Mahdi

American University in Cairo Press

This chapter discusses the failure of comparative politics of the Middle East to foresee the Arab uprisings that swept the region in 2011. It argues that except for few attempts, the field's focus on regime-level and formal politics deviated attention from contentious politics that was brewing throughout the region and especially in Egypt. Providing a general synthesis of the literature the chapter introduces key themes in the book that are further developed in other chapters; including the labor movement, women struggles, and the rise of the pro-democracy and anti-war movements. It argues that the Egyptian Revolution as a case in point came as a culmination of a decade of protests and budding social movements. The authors argue for the usefulness of other approaches such as Social Movement Theory, social-anthropology approaches, and political economy to understanding of Middle East politics. The chapter concludes with a synopsis of book and highlighting key aspects of looking at Middle East politics in the post-Arab Spring years.

Keywords:   Middle East politics, contentious politics, social movements, protests, authoritarianism

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