From Independence to Revolution tells the story of the complicated relationship between the Egyptian population and the nation's most prominent political opposition the Islamist movement. Most commentators focus on the Muslim Brotherhood and radical jihadists constantly vying for power under successive authoritarian rulers, from Gamal Abdul Nasser to General Abdel Fattah el-Sisi. Yet the relationship between the Islamists and Egyptian society has not remained fixed. Instead, groups like the Muslim Brotherhood, radical jihadists and progressive Islamists like Tayyar al Masri have varied in their responses to Egypt's socio-political transformation over the last sixty years, thereby attracting different sections of the Egyptian electorate at different times.
From bread riots in the 1970s to the 2011 Tahrir Square uprising and the subsequent election of the Muslim Brotherhood's Mohamed Morsi in 2012, Egypt's Islamists have been countering authoritarian elites since colonial independence. This book is based on the author's fieldwork interviews in Egypt and builds on comparative political approaches to the topic. It offers an account of Egypt's contesting actors, demonstrating how a consistently fragmented Islamist movement and an authoritarian state have cemented political instability and economic decline as a persistent trend.
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About the Author
Gillian Kennedy has a PhD in Middle Eastern Politics from King's College London. She works for Canadean as lead analyst for the MENA region and is a visiting research fellow at King's College. Previously she has had articles published on Open Democracy and in the Montreal Review, as well as appearing as a regular commentator on Egyptian politics for BBC Newshour.