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Learner Reviews & Feedback for After the Arab Spring – Democratic Aspirations and State Failure by University of Copenhagen

481 ratings
135 reviews

About the Course

Learn why the hope and excitement of the Arab Spring is gone, why so many Arab states are falling apart, why the youth are so frustrated, why there are so many refugees, and what can be done about it. The so-called Arab Spring appeared to end decades of exceptionalism and bring the Arab world back into the mainstream of global developments. The rebellions promised the return of politics and the reassertion of popular sovereignty against their corrupt and geriatric leaders. Much hope and flowery language greeted the young men and women who deposed their leaders and tried to build new, better societies. Today, the Arab world is in deep crisis. Of the 22 member states of the Arab League, at least five have essentially collapsed: Iraq, Libya, Yemen, Somalia and Syria exist only in name today, as their territories have fallen to competing, murderous armed groups. In the remaining countries, the old autocracies have reasserted themselves. The repression at home is now worsened by regional conflict on an unprecedented scale, and the resulting frustration has led to the biggest refugee flows in recent memory. What went wrong? This course offers an overview of the structural shortcomings of Arab states and societies, which help us understand why the democratic awakening did not happen but instead “has given way to civil wars, ethnic, sectarian and regional divisions and the reassertion of absolutism.” This raises the obvious and renewed question whether there is something inherent in the Arab, and by analogy Muslim, condition that makes them special. Does this condition make this part of the world impervious to generally observable trends towards greater accountability, popular participation in political decision-making, greater generation and fairer division of economic wealth? Join this course to find out!...

Top reviews


Apr 14, 2020

Provides a fascinating and important approach to studying this topic. The professor's framework and intellectual depth enriched my understanding of this important and enduring problem.


Oct 12, 2018

An eye opening experience. I really hope this becomes a mandated course among anyone participating in any diplomatic initiatives in the Middle East and the Arabic world.

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101 - 125 of 136 Reviews for After the Arab Spring – Democratic Aspirations and State Failure

By Amr A W

Oct 11, 2017

Excellent course. Greetings from Egypt. ;)


Sep 28, 2017

Very interested this course. Thank you.

By Maria A V

Jan 2, 2018

Excellent course, excellent professor.

By Ruben B P

Aug 31, 2017

Extremely good class from Dr. Afsah!

By Ahmer J K

Nov 18, 2017

Excellent, though provoking course!

By Saad A W B

Oct 29, 2019

Many thanks...Very fruitful course

By Virgil H

May 3, 2020

Incredibly interesting lectures.


Sep 20, 2017

fun and interesting course.

By Andrea E

Jun 19, 2020

Excellent and brilliant!

By Sujata A

Feb 27, 2019

Lucid and informative.

By Katharina W

Feb 26, 2019

I gained enormous ins

By Glenn H

May 7, 2020

Interesting course.


May 28, 2020

Excellent course

By Abdulaziz S B

Jan 26, 2020

Excellent .

By Ali M H

Jan 6, 2022

very good

By Mahmoud E

Apr 15, 2019

very good

By Mona A A

Jul 7, 2020


By Antoine C

Jan 20, 2018



Jun 8, 2020

The course seemed to be interesting in the starting and end but was quite boring for some time in the middle. I myself found some terms used in the course difficult as being a student from a science background. All the topics and aspects were fully covered with an unbiased approach. I would be glad to learn more from you in the future.

By Aude P

Dec 28, 2017

It would be better to add more illustrations, and when pictures are shown, to comment them. As it is, it is hard to read the picture caption, and listen to the speaker (even harder when one has to read the transcript)

There are some mistakes in the english transcript

By Sara A M

Mar 29, 2018

the course is very good,I learned a lot of information I didn't know before .

although sometimes I felt that there is generalizations, and sometimes the instructor was biased.

I think they also should add the model answer and the justification

By Ana S

Sep 29, 2017

The course is very interesting. It's important to understand the world we live in and it's important to understand the reasons of its current state. It's a light course, but it provides an interesting overview of the Arab exception.

By Claire B

Jan 18, 2022

The content of the class was very interesting ! I thought it would rely more on historical events, maybe remind more the arab Spring events. But that is my personal expectation !

Thank you for your work, Professor

By Christine J

Jun 30, 2020

I found the course very interesting and appreciated the references to Arab, European and American authors and scholars. However, the course does not at all emphasize the differences between Arab countries.

By Tatjana G

Aug 28, 2017

The course is very interesting and helpful to understand the big picture. But sometimes I lost the overview at which point of the review/ discussion we actually are. Anyway, I recommend the course.