AbstractThe January 25th Egyptian revolution was initiated in the public square and defeated in the courts. In the months following the forced resignation of longtime president Hosni Mubarak, a protracted power struggle ensued between a people demanding self-governance and a chronically authoritarian regime. As the various stakeholders within the “deep state” realized their political disadvantage in mass street mobilizations by youth activists and opposition groups, they strategically transferred the conflict to the courts. Cognizant of Mubarak’s success in co-opting significant portions of the judiciary, the military-led interim government trusted the judges to deploy thin notions of rule of law to quash Egyptians’ demands for substantive justice and populist democracy. Thus, assessing the implications of Egypt’s so-called January 25th Revolution warrants an inquiry into the role that courts played in the retrenchment of a centralized, authoritarian state and what ultimately became a stillborn revolution.
SubjectsJudicial independence -- Egypt -- 21st century
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