Social Justice

Are the unhappy unemployed to blame for unrest? Scrutinising participation in the Arab Spring uprisings

Abstract Unemployment is considered a significant driver behind the so-called Arab Spring, and more generally behind protests, rebellions, and civil wars. However, the empirical evidence of this hypothesised link between unemployment and political instability is scant and contradictory. This article contributes to filling this gap. In addition, this is the first study which will concentrate on the role of unemployment…

Will Algeria’s New President Resume Politics as Usual or Bring Genuine Change?

…Determined Protestors Protesters see Tebboune as very much a part of that ruling elite rather than a step toward democratic change. The protests have seen widespread support from across the political, ideological, and socioeconomic spectrum, including participation by women’s, human rights, cultural, and student organizations. The protest movement has also created new spaces for citizens to debate major issues relating to…

Perceived linkages to politicians and group deprivation sentiment

The political reasons for why individuals perceive their group to be deprived are not well understood. This article proposes that individuals who perceive having linkages to political leaders are less likely to feel group deprivation. It is posited that such perception stems from politicians’ efforts to attract support through either credit-claiming or clientelism. Results from a survey in Lebanon show…

In 2011, Egyptians quickly tired of protest. Here’s why that matters for Sudan and Algeria.

….. Public disillusionment with democracy We examined how mobilization in Egypt affected political attitudes after the fall of Mubarak by using local newspaper reporting to map protests, and matching this with data from the Arab Barometer survey. Our findings suggest that within five months of Mubarak’s ouster, Egyptians living in high-protest areas were more likely to associate democracy with socioeconomic…

Beyond elections: perceptions of democracy in four Arab countries

This article draws on public opinion survey data from Morocco, Tunisia, Egypt, and Jordan to investigate first, whether a “demand for democracy” in the region exists; second, how to measure it; and third, how respondents understand it. The picture emerging from this analysis is complex, eluding the simple dichotomy between prima facie support and second order incongruence with democracy, which characterises current…

Middle East survey sees patchy progress in views on women’s and LGBT+ rights

LONDON, June 24 (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – More men than women in Iraq say they have been sexually harassed, while only 6% of Lebanese people think being gay is acceptable, according to a major survey of public opinion in the Middle East published on Monday. The wide-ranging study, conducted by researchers at Princeton University, found although support for women’s rights and for…

Poverty, inequality and the structural threat to the Arab region

…… Jordanians who see no justice in their lives increased from 40 to 46 percent in just the four months between June and September 2018, two-thirds of citizens feel the country is moving in the wrong direction, 72 percent of households said they could not meet their basic expenses (compared to 42 percent in mid-2011), and two-thirds of households reported…

THE STATE OF SOCIAL JUSTICE IN THE ARAB WORLD-The Arab Uprisings of 2011 and Beyond

ABSTRACT. The Arab uprisings were sometimes seen as calls for democracy, but we argue that in fact they were more accurately calls for social justice. Citizens across the region took to the streets to demand better economic, political and social outcomes including reducing levels of inequality, eliminating corruption and increasing respect for human dignity. These protests yielded significant changes across…

Challenging Information Scarcity. The Effect of Internet Use on Protest under Authoritarian Regimes

“The importance of profoundly understanding the drivers behind protest under authoritarian regimes is hard to overestimate. Mass mobilisation can be the prelude to dramatic political ruptures that affect the lives of many. This can be for the better, as Tunisia’s Jasmine Revolution or Slobodan Milosevic’ overthrow demonstrate, but protests can also be the overture of a nightmare, as revealed by…