Explaining Egypt's place in a changing Arab world

20 June 2014

Leading Australian and international thinkers will discuss the upheaval in Egypt at the University of Sydney on Monday 23 June, in the first of a series of new talks probing sweeping change across the Arab world.

A Continuing Spring brings together expert views on social justice, economic development and cultures of freedom to explain these shifts to an Australian audience.

Dr HA Hellyer of The Brookings Institution in Washington DC and Anthony Bubalo of the Lowy Institute will join Dr Lucia Sorbera to share their views, personal experiences and expertise on the region. Award-winning former ABC Middle East correspondent David Hardaker will chair the talk.

"The name of the project challenges misconceptions and common views about current political events in the Arab world," said Dr Sorbera, director of the series and a lecturer in the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies.

"If the process which started in late 2010 in Tunisia was 'a spring', as mainstream media have labeled it, then it needs to be understood as 'a continuing spring', that is, a long political and cultural process, whose roots are in the history of social movements in the Arab world, and whose outcomes will be visible only in the medium and long-term," she said.

"Egypt is the most populated country in the Arab world; it is the cradle of Arab modernity and it has a long history of social and political movements, including feminism, socialism, and Islamism. The dramatic events occurred in Egypt in the last three years are rooted in the modern history of the country and they can only been understood if analysed from a historical perspective," she added.

Monday's talk, Egypt 2011-2014, is co-presented by the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies and the Religion, State and Society Network.


Event details

What: Sydney Ideas: Egypt 2011-2014: Opportunities and Challenges After Three Years of Uprisings
Where: Law School Foyer, Level 2, Sydney Law School, Eastern Avenue, The University of Sydney (Camperdown Campus).
When: Monday, 23 June, 6pm - 7.30pm
Cost: Free, but registration necessary.

Media enquiries:Luke O'Neill: (02) 9114 1961, 0481 012 600,