WCED Panel. "Regional Revolutions: What the Revolutions of 1989 in Central Europe Tell Us about 2011 in the Middle East."
Sponsors: WCED, African Studies Center, Center for Middle Eastern and North African Studies, International Institute, International Policy Center.
What can we learn about the current turmoil and popular mobilization in the Middle East and North Africa from the collapse of communist regimes in 1989? Do these events constitute a “revolutionary cascade”? How does protest diffuse? In both 1989 and 2011, anger and frustration at illegitimate autocratic regimes spurred regional protest and regime collapse. Experts on Middle Eastern and East Central European politics will explore the similarities (and what they teach us about the likely trajectories of 2011) and the important differences: the importance of single party rule and foreign sponsorship of the regimes, the different patterns of popular and elite mobilization, and the very different forms of regime collapse.
Moderator: Anna Grzymala-Busse, WCEE/WCED Director and Professor of Political Science
Presenters: Juan Cole, Center for South Asian Studies Director and Professor of History; Michael Dobbs, Visiting Professor of Communications and former Washington Post Warsaw correspondent; Khaled Mattawa, Associate Professor of Creative Writing; Scott Page, Center for the Study of Complex Systems Director and Professor of Political Science; Andrew Shryock, Associate Professor of Anthropology; and Jan Svejnar, International Policy Center Director and Professor of Business Administration, Public Policy, and Economics