The University of Alberta is hosting a free international conference:

The Unfinished Project of the Arab Spring: Why “Middle East Exceptionalism” is Still Wrong
September 25 – 27
University of Alberta

For full details, visit the conference website.

The conference features a keynote by Tariq Ali (RSVP online) on Friday, September 25 at 7:00 pm and a panel which includes Yasmeen Abu-Laban (Political Science, University of Alberta) and Abigail Bakan (Social Justice Education, University of Toronto) speaking on Israel, Palestine and the Politics of Race: From Exceptionalism to Global Context on Saturday, September 26 at 10:30 am. Check the full schedule for other sessions.

Conference description:

Four years after the recent revolutions/social movements in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), the crisis in the region is evident with the rise of ISIS in Iraq and Syria, the return of a military regime in Egypt, the breakout of proxy/civil war in Syria and Yemen, and the chaos and collapse of the Libyan polity

Is the Middle East exceptionally immune to democratic movements, values and institutions?

This international conference suggests that contemporary social movements in the Middle East and North Africa are open-ended and unfinished (rather than failed) projects.

Presenters will consider these movements and their aftermath with an eye to the socio-political opportunities and potentials for progressive change they left behind.

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