Where's the 'Bread, Freedom and Social Justice' a Year after Egypt's Revolution
Publisher The Guardian
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When people took to Egypt's streets in January 2011, they were bound together by a deep hatred of the Mubarak regime rather than a common vision of what demands for "bread, freedom and social justice" would mean in policy and practice. A year on, the situation is worse economically, political space is more constrained than ever, and social justice is framed in even more exclusionary terms.
For there are now two contending sources of legitimacy: parliament and the street. Some say that it seems that one predatory coalition (corrupt businessmen and Mubarak's ruling party) has been replaced with another (the Muslim Brotherhood, who emerged as the biggest party in the recent election, and the military). The difference, of course, is that the Muslim Brotherhood came to power through the ballot box. Yet this is unlikely to displace the legitimacy of the excluded, who engage through unruly politics.