Law in the Egyptian Revolt

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“Law in the Egyptian Revolt,” Middle East Law and Governance, vol. 3 (2011) 181-191.

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Egypt, law, revolution, revolt, constitution, Supreme Constitutional Court, legal reform, rule of law

Among the protest movements sweeping the region in the Arab awakening of 2011, the Egyptian revolt is the movement that is perhaps most defi ned by a struggle over the Constitution and the rule of law more generally. I argue that this intense focus on law and legal institutions is a legacy of the prominent role that law played in maintaining authoritarian rule in Mubarak’s Egypt. Just as law and legal institutions were the principal mechanisms undergirding authoritarian rule, opposition activists know that democracy can only emerge through comprehensive legal reform. This article examines the struggle for constitutional power in three periods – before, during, and after the Egyptian revolt of 2011.

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