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De-marginalisation in the Wake of the 2011 Arab Uprisings: Democratic and Islamist Narratives in Tunisia and the Prospects for Euro-Mediterranean Relations

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dc.contributor.advisor Calleya, Stephen C.
dc.contributor.author Farrugia, Massimo R.
dc.creator Farrugia, Massimo R.
dc.date 2012-12-05
dc.date.accessioned 2013-02-12T17:24:58Z
dc.date.available NO_RESTRICTION en_US
dc.date.available 2013-02-12T17:24:58Z
dc.date.issued 2013-02-12
dc.identifier.uri https://hdl.handle.net/1920/7999
dc.description.abstract The 2011 “Arab Spring” which started in Tunisia and spread to the rest of North Africa and the Arab Middle East has opened a potentially democratic space, triggering what this work calls the process of ‘de-marginalisation’. In the wake of the historic uprisings formerly marginalised groups – unemployed youths, women, students, workers and Islamists – find themselves negotiating their fate in the new space which has opened up. Embarking on a fieldwork research in Tunisia, this thesis employs a nuanced theory of culture to unpack emerging narratives. It does so by decoding four salient symbols and metaphors which strike a chord in Tunisians: Habib Bourguiba, the Constitution, the ‘Sixth Caliphate’ and the Personal Status Code. Through a textual analysis, this work uncovers how solidarity, exclusion, humanisation, dehumanisation, tolerance and justice function in Tunisian society. The conflicts surrounding these symbols articulate citizens’ demands for a profound democratic sharing of the civil space amid fresh fears about a looming radicalisation of society. By examining how the 2011 events have challenged analytical assumptions on a “backward” culture in the region this thesis identifies the articulation of such ideas in European Union policy towards its southern neighbourhood, namely the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership and the European Neighbourhood Policy. Denouncing the EU’s tacit support to the fallen regimes, the ethos of demarginalisation calls for EU policy which supports political reform through solidarity and rapprochement. In practice, the democratisation process in Tunisia needs buttressing through financial aid coupled with conditionality so that Tunisia may sustain its democratising momentum.
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.subject Arab uprisings en_US
dc.subject Euro-Mediterranean en_US
dc.subject Tunisia en_US
dc.subject de-marginalisation en_US
dc.subject democratic narratives en_US
dc.subject cultural symbols en_US
dc.title De-marginalisation in the Wake of the 2011 Arab Uprisings: Democratic and Islamist Narratives in Tunisia and the Prospects for Euro-Mediterranean Relations en_US
dc.type Thesis en
thesis.degree.name Master of Science in Conflict Analysis and Resolution en_US
thesis.degree.name Master of Arts in Conflict Resolution and Mediterranean Security en_US
thesis.degree.level Master's en
thesis.degree.discipline Conflict Analysis and Resolution en
thesis.degree.discipline Conflict Resolution and Mediterranean Security en
thesis.degree.grantor George Mason University en
thesis.degree.grantor University of Malta en


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