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Brown University

Publication Date

Fall 2019

Program Name

Tunisia and Italy: Politics and Religious Integration in the Mediterranean


Kasbah 1 and Kasbah 2 – sit-ins resulting in the expulsion of old-regime ministers, the installation of a technocratic government, and the promise of elections – are generally regarded as two of the most important popular actions in the Tunisian Revolution. Left as a footnote to this history is Kasbah 3, a third sit-in widely considered to be a failed, radical movement corrosive to the successes of the Revolution. Eight years later, with the election of Kais Saied and the failure of the pre-revolutionary establishment Bourguibist movement, the spirit of Kasbah 3 appears to have returned. This paper seeks to demonstrate the importance of Kasbah 3 by tracing the politics which emerged from the sit-in and connecting them with the emerging movements that created the conditions for the victory of Tunisian President Kais Saied. The study consists of mostly reviews of primary source materials, an interview, and quantitative data from post-Revolution Tunisian elections. In discussing election results, the execution and criticisms of Kasbah 3, and the organizations and personalities that emerged from it, this study finds direct and indirect connections between Kais Saied and Kasbah 3. More importantly, it paints a picture of the rise of a politics, unspecific to Saied, designed to disrupt the remaining influences of the pre-Revolutionary status quo.


African History | African Studies | Arabic Studies | Civic and Community Engagement | Islamic World and Near East History | Political History | Political Science | Politics and Social Change


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