When at the height of the ‘Arab Spring’ Egyptians from all walks of life took to the streets to oust one of the Arab world’s most long-standing dictators, it took both Egyptians and outside observers by surprise. This report explores the events commonly described as the January 25 Revolution in Egypt, as well as the immediate transitional period that followed the ousting of President Hosni Mubarak, marked by recurrent unrest and mobilization. Starting from a detailed empirical description of the events themselves, it will illustrate the conditions that led to the uprising by embedding them in a more structural analysis covering the regime’s origins and historical trajectories as well as more recent developments in the last ten years. Together these circumstances created a set of political opportunities that inventive actors seized upon to set in motion a process that in the course of only a few weeks mobilized a cross-class coalition to bring about the seemingly impossible. However, in elucidating the transitional phase and the struggles it entails in more detail, the report also shows how the opportunities and processes conducive to the breakdown of Egypt’s authoritarian regime are not necessarily those most conducive to the establishment of a new, democratic one.EUI SPS - Cosmos Working Paper 2012/14.
Journal Article - 2018
Monograph - 2018