Power and Ridicule: Political Mockery and Subversion in the Middle East and North Africa

Episode 61

Power and Ridicule: Political Mockery and Subversion in the Middle East and North Africa

In this podcast, Prof. Charles Tripp discusses how humor and mockery are considered ways of resilience against power through the use of cartoons, songs, images, or any form of art to reveal the lies, hypocrisy of those in power.

Prof. Tripp is Professor Emeritus of Politics with reference to the Middle East and North Africa at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and is a Fellow of the British Academy. His PhD was from SOAS and examined Egyptian politics in the latter years of monarchy. At SOAS he has been head of the Centre for Middle Eastern Studies and is one of the co-founders of the Centre for Comparative Political Thought. His research has mainly focused on political developments in the Middle East and includes the nature of autocracy, war and the state, as well as Islamic political thought, the politics of resistance and the relationship between art and power. He is currently working on a study of the emergence of the public and the rethinking of republican ideals in North Africa.

This episode is part of the Contemporary Thought series and was recorded on February 14th, 2019 at the Centre d'Études Maghrébines à Tunis (CEMAT).

Download the Podcast:  Feed iTunes / Podbean

We thank Mr. Souheib Zallazi, (student at CFTTunisia) and Mr. Malek Saadani (student at ULT, Tunisia), for their interpretation of el Ardh Ardhi of Sabri Mesbah, performed for the introduction and conclusion of this podcast. Souheib on melodica and Malek on guitar.

Posted by Hayet Lansari, Librarian, Outreach Coordinator, Content Curator (CEMA).

Suggested Readings

Brummett, Palmira. 2000. Image and Imperialism in the Ottoman Revolutionary Press, 1908-1911. Albany: SUNY Press.

Davies, Christie. 2007. "Humour and Protest: Jokes under Communism." International Review of Social History. 52/S15(December): 291-305.

Della Subin, Anna and Hussein Omar. 6 June 2016. "The Egyptian Satirist who Inspired a Revolution." The New Yorker.

Karl reMarks (Karl Sharro). 

Mellor, Noha. 2015. "Misri Effendi – the Squeezed Middle Class." The Egyptian Dream: Egyptian National Identity and Uprisings. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Milner Davies, Jessica, Ed. 2017. Satire and Politics – The Interplay of Heritage and Practice. New York: Palgrave MacMillan.



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