9:30 am to 12:30 pm
In 2011, the sudden eruption of popular demonstrations across the Arab world filled participants and observers alike with hope in a new dawn of democracy. Three and a half years later, outcomes are decidedly mixed. This seminar will discuss rises and falls in Middle East politics since the Arab spring, with the aim of giving participants solid foundational understanding of how historical context and multi-faceted political struggles shape this turbulent and exciting region. We will begin with a general political overview of the Arab uprisings by briefly discussing the nature of pre-existing regimes and state-society relations, examining the causes and mechanisms driving popular rebellion, identifying commonalities and differences in their unfoldings across the region, and considering the major themes and issues that they bring to the fore. It will then guide participants in tracing political developments since 2011. This seminar will present and compare experiences in different countries, asking what explains why Tunisia has seen relative success in shepherding a transition to constitutional democracy whereas Egypt appears to have undergone a resurgence of authoritarianism, Libya still struggles to build strong state institutions, and Syria has descended into a devastating civil war with no end in sight. It will conclude by thinking through the challenges and possibilities that shape where the region might be headed in the years to come.
Registration for all Newberry Teachers’ Consortium seminars opens September 4, 2014.
For NTC registration information, please contact Charlotte Ross at firstname.lastname@example.org.