25 October 2018

A decade of social movements in Tunisia. Review and Prospects

Conference - Thursday, October 25th

Conference of the Research Initiative Social Movements in the Global Age by Geoffrey Pleyers

Mounir Saidani will present the report on social movements he has just published for the Tunisian Forum of Economic and Social Rights. On the basis of the analysis of the evolutions of a dozen social movements in Tunisia during the last decade (2008-2018), this report draws a portrait of the contexts, actors, practices and modes of operation of the social movements in question.

The starting point of the analysis is an attempt to delineate the historical moment of the exit from an "old" model that had prevailed until the late 1990s, early 2000s, and the progression towards a new model of closer and closer to the "common" characteristics of so-called new social movements.

He will review examples of movements from "Protests Against Thirst" (Summer 2012) to "Manich Mymeh" ("I do not forgive") against the so-called "National Reconciliation" law, 2015-2017) and "Fach Nestannaow" ("What are we waiting for?", Tells the State Budget Law for the year 2018, December 2017-January 2018), going through movements trying to establish projects. of social and solidarity economy ("Association for the Protection of the Palm Grove of the Oasis of Jemna", 2011-2017).

The presentation will show the extreme diversity of the actors (villagers of all ages, young graduates without work, former trade unionists of the student movement, young city-dwellers highly educated, including cyberactivists, artist-agitators, young supporters working as individuals, etc.). The model of analysis that Mounir Saidani has managed to develop and implement will show, in addition to the variety of actions, that the cycle of protest that social Tunisia has been experiencing for a decade is based on the entanglement of three facts:

  • individual and collective processes of construction-deconstruction-identity reconstruction,
  • real and virtual rhizome networking,
  • self-reproductive mobilizations, successive and in snowballs.

Download the research report on social movements in Tunisia (in Arabic).



Mounir Saidani, University Tunis El Manar


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The conferences of the Social Movements in the Global Age Research Initiative analyze social movements in the South of the planet or regions that are generally not very visible in the sociological field, such as Eastern Europe with the aim of better integrating researchers, analysts and actors from these regions into building a global, multi-situated perspective on social movements and the challenges of democracy in this troubled period.



Thursday, October 25th
6pm to 8 pm

Room A3-50
FMSH | 54, bd Raspail, Paris 6

Free entrance

Conference in French

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