10-Years On: Organizing in the MENA Region
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Ten Years On: Organizing in the MENA Region

Ten years ago, Tunisian street vendor Mohamed Bouazizi stood in the middle of traffic, shouted “How do you expect me to make a living?” and set himself on fire, catalyzing popular protests in Tunisia and across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), and creating a lens through which advocates, scholars, and policymakers understand the region until today. Protesters took to the streets to demand freedom, economic justice, and accountability; political activists put forth proposals for reform and institutional change; civil society convened to bring about action; and journalists documented the events as they unfolded. Ten years later, we see a region that tells a complicated narrative: one of agency, openings, and resilience; yet also, one of repression, civil war, and mass atrocity. 

The story of organizing in the MENA region did not begin and will not end with the “Arab Spring.” And so, in a commitment to share and learn from the lived experiences of those presenting alternate visions to decades of status quo, TIMEP is pleased to put forth “Ten Years On: Organizing in the MENA Region,” a project that will provide a platform for those who have organized, are organizing, and will organize in the region. Through “Ten Years On,” and in collaboration with its fellows, partners, and network, TIMEP will host interactive, audiovisual, and written content that unpacks how organizing has evolved; how governments and non-state actors have responded; and where we find ourselves today. In doing so, “Ten Years On,” will look into three spaces in which these contestations have unfolded: on the ground, in cyberspace, and in exile.

On the Ground

Arab Spring Revolutions: Dreams and Prospects of Political and...

There is no doubt that the Arab Spring revolutions have greatly contributed to the formation of the collective consciousness of many groups in society, especially youth, women and marginalized groups such as the LGBTQ community.

Music in Egypt in the Last Decade: Hit and...

I started my career in journalism seventeen years ago. In a series of unplanned incidents, I ended up covering musical activities and the contemporary music scene as my main focus.

Lawyering for Change

In Lawyering for Change, TIMEP’s Legal Unit conducts a series of interviews with lawyers, legal practitioners, and academics who explore the roles that lawyers have played throughout the region’s protest movements and revolutions over the last decade.


Walls Have Ears, but Digital Walls Have Ears and...

Syrians used to say “walls have ears” to warn someone that they crossed a red line or to refer to the country’s security apparatus and its deployed informants, the “Mukhabarat.” In 2011, the same people broke the silence and fear and rose up against the authoritarian regime.

Organizing in Syria: Legislative Fact Sheet

A fact sheet by TIMEP’s Legal Unit explores how the Syrian regime has used the law as a tool to restrict key fundamental rights and to normalize years of mass atrocity.

2/25 Virtual Event: Ten Years On: Contesting Cyberspace in...

TIMEP hosted “Ten Years On: Contesting Cyberspace in MENA,” a timely virtual discussion on social media, surveillance, cyberwarfare, and censorship.


Egyptian Lawyers: A Story of Continued Resistance

It’s no secret that being a lawyer isn’t a walk in the park—the stress, long hours, ever-changing laws, and serious responsibility makes it a hard choice. Today in Egypt, it’s also a risky choice—one that in recent years has led to prison sentences, exile and even death.  Historically, lawyers have played a vital role in […]

4/1 Virtual Event: Ten Years On: Organizing in Diaspora...

On April 1, 2021, join TIMEP for a timely virtual discussion on organizing in diaspora and exile as part of the Ten Years On project.

Ten Years On: Egyptians in Exile

In a series of short video interviews, TIMEP speaks to four Egyptians living in exile as they reflect on their participation in the January 25 Revolution, their stories of departure and exile, and how they continue finding ways to further causes from abroad.