Situation Assessment 22 November, 2011

The Tunisian Revolution: An Analysis of Analyses


Murshed al-Qubbi

Tunisian researcher and lecturer at several universities. His primary interests are in history and Islamic civilization. Dr. al-Qubbi has published several books and articles.

In this paper, the writer seeks to analyze the revolution in Tunisia with particular attention to whether what took place was a revolution or an intifada, exploring the linguistic and political meanings of the two concepts. In his analysis, the author attempts to tackle the problem that hinges on the ways in which the Arab intellectual can overcome what can be called the "atrophy of the sense of history".  The idea of revolution was posited by Arab intellectuals decades ago, without an actual revolution having taken place in any Arab country; now, the revolution has indeed occurred and is expected to spread to other Arab countries.

The author also anticipates the management of the open dialectical relationship between the historical and the epistemological through an examination of the ways in which scholars have analyzed the Tunisian revolution, the mechanisms they have used in their analysis, and the stated and implied goals motivating their consideration of the issue. The author argues that there is truth to the predictions that the Tunisian revolution will have a considerable impact upon the regional and international landscape; also, that what took place in Tunisia undoubtedly enriched the concept of revolution itself, bringing it in line with the rhythm and development of history. The author sees that the chief gain of the Tunisian revolution, and those that occurred subsequently, has been the restoration of a sense of value and dignity to the Arab human beings.  It is anticipated that this person will be inspired toward the dual acts of demolition and reconstruction in line with the revolutionary nature of the act and its requirements.


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