Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name



Political Science


Susan L. Woodward

Subject Categories

Near Eastern Languages and Societies | Other International and Area Studies | Political Science


civil society, democracy, egypt, mubarak, revolution


This thesis examines the role of civil society in Egypt and argues that it was central to the success of the 2011 revolution that ended in the ouster of President Hosni Mubarak. I will discuss the development of civil society under Mubarak and demonstrate its strength. In understanding civil society in Egypt, this thesis will discuss the strengths of groups such as associations, Islamist movements, women's groups, labor activism, and youth movements. I also demonstrate that it is important to understand the precedents established that shaped the state's stance towards civil society. As such, this thesis will also discuss the authoritarian norms of former presidents Nasser and Sadat and an examination of Mubarak's own tools of domination aimed to limit the agitations of a strong civil society. Given this understanding, I will explain the events of 2011 as well as the aftermath and prospects for democracy in Egypt, carefully explaining the role Egypt's civil society will continue to play as the country develops a new political strategy.