Handbook of Critical International Relations
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Handbook of Critical International Relations

Edited by Steven C. Roach

Comprising a plurality of perspectives, this timely Handbook is an essential resource for understanding past and current challenges to democracy, justice, social and gender equality, identity and freedom. It shows how critical international relations (IR) theory functions as a broad-based and diverse critique of society.
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Chapter 12: Neoliberal authoritarianism in Egypt before and after the uprisings: a critical international political economy perspective

Roberto Roccu


Despite the dramatic reversals of fortune that Egypt has experienced since the 2011 uprisings, the economic policy trajectory pursued has remained remarkably consistent with the neoliberal template. This chapter asks whether and how the establishment and consolidation of a neoliberal accumulation regime, promoted and supported by the international economic regime, conditions the prospects of democratisation of the political regime in Egypt. It argues that the transformations brought about by neoliberal restructuring on Egypt’s position and role in the global economy and on state-society relations make transition towards democratic rule along traditional ‘third wave’ lines exceedingly unlikely. It also shows that the emergence of a neoliberal authoritarian regime, and its shoring up under different conditions after the uprisings, is both crucially dependent on the support of the international economic regime and unable to restore the conditions for hegemony. In advancing this argument, this chapter relies on a critical IPE approach that provides a first contribution towards bridging hitherto separate bodies of literature on international, political, and accumulation regimes.

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