Tunisia: Surprise, change and continuity. Relating actors, structures and mobilization opportunities around the 14 January 2011 revolution
Title: Tunisia: Surprise, change and continuity. Relating actors, structures and mobilization opportunities around the 14 January 2011 revolution
Author: DONKER, Teije Hidde
Series/Number: EUI SPS; COSMOS; 2012/12
External link: http://www.eui.eu/Projects/cosmos/Home.aspx
The following report provides an in-depth and empirically focused overview of collective mobilization before, during and after the breakdown of the Tunisian authoritarian regime in 2010-11. It focuses on the relation between changing (political) contexts and dynamics within Tunisian collective mobilization concerning the peaceful character of the protests, the use of modern media tools, the language of human rights, the role of students, labor organizations, and the Islamists. The report provides a detailed overview of the historical and structural background of the uprising and eventual revolution. It discusses resulting (political) opportunities for social mobilization- provides an overview of key actors and - eventually gives a detailed overview of actual protest events taking place throughout this period. It is argued that existing student, labor and “democratization” movements in Tunisia did not initiate protests, but did provide crucial existing structures for protests to endure and spread. The movements themselves were therefore not at the inception of the uprising, but were crucial in shaping it. Second, it is argued that so-called 'political opportunity structures' were completely closed at the inception of the uprising but that the subsequent opening of these structures led to a plethora of (re)mobilizing movements - actually showing that changes in political context influenced mobilization dynamics after the actual revolution of January 14th 2011.
Subject: Tunisia; Arab spring; democratization; contentious mobilization
Type of Access: openAccess