Many Egyptians refer to the "Arab Spring" as the "1/2 Revolution." Most Arab speakers think of the continuing unrest period as the Thaura (the uprising). Now, James Gelvin, author of The Arab Awakenings, What Everyone Needs to Know, and Khalid Hussein artist and author of the illustrated book The Tunisian Awakening, present their new works and engage the audience in a frank discussion about uprisings across the Arab world.
The Tunisian Awakening (written and illustrated by Khalid Hussein) is a nonfiction graphic novel, telling the story of the Tunisian people's uprising and overthrow of the Ben Ali regime in early 2011. From the public suicide of Muhammad Bouazizi in December, 2010, which sparked the initial protests in the town of Sidi Bouzid, to the ignominious exit of the President from the country, the book relates the major events of the first revolution of what would come to be called the "Arab Spring."
Exhaustively researched, and intricately illustrated, The Tunisian Awakening is not only an excellent introduction for the lay person, but also a beautiful companion volume to academic texts, and an inspiring tribute to a nation's popular struggle for freedom.
In an engaging question-and-answer format, The Arab Uprisings explores all aspects of the revolutionary protests that have rocked the Middle East. Historian James Gelvin begins with an overview—What sparked the Arab uprisings? Where did the demands for democracy and human rights come from? How appropriate is the phrase "Arab Spring"?—before turning to specific countries around the region. He looks at such topics as the role of youth, labor, and religious groups in Tunisia and Egypt and discusses why the military turned against rulers in both countries.
Exploring the uprisings in Libya and Yemen, Gelvin explains why these two states are considered "weak," why that status is important for understanding the upheavals there, and why outside powers intervened in Libya but not in Yemen. Next, Gelvin compares two cases that defied expectations: Algeria, which experts assumed would experience a major upheaval after Egypt's, and Syria, which experts failed to foresee. He then looks at the monarchies of Morocco, Jordan, and the Gulf, exploring the commonalities and differences of protest movements in each.
The final chapter discusses the implications of the uprisings. What do they mean for the United States? For Iran? Has al-Qaeda been strengthened or weakened? What effects have the uprisings had on the Israel-Palestine conflict? What conclusions might we draw from the uprisings so far?