Details for Egypt: The Marriage of Islamism and the System

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Name:Egypt: The Marriage of Islamism and the System
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Author : Global Political Trends Center (GPoT - Turkey)
By Cengiz Günay | Published in May 2012

The "January 25 Revolution" was not a classic revolution. President Muba-rak's fall did not entail the overthrow of the regime, neither alter the elites or destroy their institutions, nor reverse the social situation. Although power structures and economic patterns were not removed, Mubarak's fall set an end to exclusive authoritarian despotism and initiated a process of power sharing; a so called passive revolution characterised by the absorption of the "enemies' elites" into the system. From this perspective, legalisation has been only a further step in the Islamists' long and rocky road of integration through moderation. Initially based on tactical considerations, shifts in methods and behaviour usually also evoke a shift in emphasis from ideological conceptions to political pragmatism. The absorption of the Islamist elites supported a process of embourgeoisement and de-ideologization. This did not entail a departure from Islamic tenets, but rather from ideological conceptions which seemed more and more unrealistic in a globalized world. The integration of de-radicalised and moderated socially conservative Islamist groups with market economy and parliamentary democracy promises not only the prevention of political and economic turmoil, but also guarantees the reinforcement of the existing patterns of domination.

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