Arab Spring: Reality or Figment of Western Imagination?

Ref: C3741583

In 2011, people took to the streets across the Arab world; rulers fell, and expectations were high for more democratic forms of government. Today, apart from some success in Tunisia, a dictatorship rules in Egypt, while Libya, Yemen and Syria fight civil wars, and little changed in Bahrain or Saudi Arabia. Using primarily political, but also historical, religious, economic and ethnic perspectives, we will explore some of the causes of the Arab Spring and why it went wrong in Egypt, Libya and Yemen, but had limited success in Tunisia. We will also cover the role of the west, particularly in Libya, and consider future prospects for the region.

Course aim

To look behind the headlines at the events of the Arab Spring, what happened, why it succeeded or failed, and the role played by the west.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • identify some of the key underlying factors that caused the Arab Spring
  • argue for or against western intervention in Libya
  • explain why the Arab Spring failed in Egypt, but was more successful in Tunisia.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion

What else do I need to know?

  • Please bring pen and paper if you would like to take notes. Please bring any relevant newspaper or magazine articles which have interested you.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Please look out for relevant stories in the media.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full Course information sheet

Arab Spring: Reality or Figment of Western Imagination?

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  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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