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Youssef Ben Ismail


Tunisia: The Victory of Secularism over Islamism?

[Image of Rashid al-Ghannoushi and Beji Caid-Essebsi. Image from MosaiqueFM]

To the layman’s eye, the recent results of Tunisia’s legislative elections read like the triumph of progressive secularism over backward Islamism. Champions of modernization and secularization theory, in Arab and Western media alike, have hailed the victory of Nidaa Tounes  (the Call of Tunisia), a conservative patchwork movement composed of ancien régime figures, technocrats, and leftists, united under the vague banners of Bourguibism and anti-Islamism. The Islamist ...

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Youssef Ben Ismail


Youssef Ben Ismail is a Tunisian Ph.D. student at Harvard University’s Near Eastern Languages and civilizations department with a focus on Histories and Cultures of Muslim Societies.