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Protesting sectarianism: Lebanese regime resilience and Thawrat Tishreen

Al-Habbal, Jinan (2024) Protesting sectarianism: Lebanese regime resilience and Thawrat Tishreen. LSE Middle East Centre Paper Series (87). LSE Middle East Centre, London, UK.

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The October 2019 protest movement in Lebanon attracted an unprecedented number of people from all walks of life. But protesters were met with co-optation, coercion, counter-narratives, repression, threats and violence meant to suppress the protests’ challenge of the regime’s footing. This paper argues that along with sectarian political leaders’ counter-revolutionary tactics, the consociational power-sharing political system has proven resilient over the decades despite its shortcomings and even when faced with popular protests. By relying on foreign support and entrenching a patronage system, sectarian elites have maintained their positions and hegemony within this system, becoming immune to accountability. Notwithstanding their sectarian, political and ideological differences, leaders united to block anti-sectarian efforts that could have led to reforms and overhaul of the political system. The paper contends that despite regime resilience, the 2019 uprising produced political contestation by independent and secular individuals and emerging political movements that achieved small-scale gains in parliamentary, syndicate and university student council elections, paving the way for a reimagining of political life in Lebanon.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2024 The Authors
Divisions: Middle East Centre
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
J Political Science > JC Political theory
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2024 10:03
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2024 23:17

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