Linguistic Unrest at Times of Revolution: The Case of Tunisia, Egypt, and Libya

  • Reem BassiouneyEmail author


This chapter examines data from Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, and Sudan, which share one language, and witnessed more or less violent upheavals in the period since 2011. Linguistic forms and codes played a crucial role as a symbol of power and a tool to dominate. The chapter concentrates on media and public discourse, re-evaluating the relation between language and conflict. We argue that linguistic codes are resources for individual and also a point of contention during or after conflicts. In Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya, linguistic codes were contested, and the authentic identity of revolutionaries during the three revolutions was always questioned by the pro-regime group. The chapter analyses the use of linguistic codes, evaluating them in relation to linguistic theories including the concepts of indexicality, performance, and metalinguistic discourse.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The American University in CairoNew CairoEgypt

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