The Arab Spring occurs as one of the widely discussed topics in history. This can be attributed to the fact that the Arab Spring evolved into a significant global event in history. The Arab Spring can be traced to the beginning of the early twentieth century when revolts to topple over authoritarian regimes in the Middle East became the most adequate solution to dictatorship, which had defied global trends aligned with liberalisation of the populations. Worth noting is the fact that social media played a comprehensive role in enhancing the success of the Arab Spring. Precisely, social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, and twitter offered comprehensive platform where populations in support of the Arab Spring could share their resentments. As such, social media allowed like-minded people to developed well-structured and organized movements against dictatorial regimes (Plattner et al. 19).
Critical Research Questions
This research paper limits itself to answering a wider array of questions regarding the Arab Spring. More importantly, the current research paper will explore on the comprehensive role of social media with regards to the Arab Spring. In a nutshell, the question as to whether social media leveraged the success of the Arab Spring will be answered. Deductively, the research will offer an analysis on the problems resulting as population’s transits from one system of government to the other. It is imperative to note that the Arab Spring as an uprising resulted from the quests by people of the Middle East sought to transit from dictatorial regimes to liberal ones.
Why this topic matters?
The topic of the Arab Spring and social media is essential because it offers an in-depth overview of a number of historical concerns. More importantly, this topic is important because it tackles the issue on demographic change. In the contexts of the Arab Spring change was inevitable because the Middle Eastern states would not have realized socio-economic change in the midst of authoritarian regimes (Howard & Muzammil 22). In addition, this topic is important because it offers an analysis on political diversification as an essential component that allows for the realization of economic liberalization. If the Arab Spring has not occurred, states in the Middle East would not have realized political diversification, which paved way for economic liberalization of these states (Plattner et al. 22).
What I have learned regarding this topic from research
Drawing from the research I have read concerning the topic on the Arab Spring, I have learned that the Arab Spring did not occur spontaneously. Instead, it was a strategized uprising that utilized social media as the main communication tool, which linked like-minded individuals ((Almarhoon 32).
The tentative thesis for this research is that the social media is the primary factor that differentiated the Arab Spring from the earlier revolutionary movements such as the 1989 revolutions in Eastern Europe.
How I will argue this thesis
In argue for the above connoted thesis, I will offer an analysis of the notable differences and similarities between the Arab Spring and the earlier revolutionary movements. In fact, I will review a wider array of literature that explore on the topic of Arab Spring and social media. Through this, I will gain significant evidences on different issues regarding the Arab Spring.
Similarities and differences between the Arab Spring and earlier revolutionary movements
A close analysis of the Arab Spring and earlier revolutionary movements depicts a number of similarities and differences. The most significant similarity between the two revolutionary movements aligns with the fact that none of the two movements was predictable. The two occurred spontaneously and even experts on revolutions were caught unaware (Almarhoon 34). In addition, the two revolutionary movements can be traced easily through certain geographic regions.
On the other hand, the Arab Spring and earlier revolutions were different in a number of ways. Above all, the environments where these revolts took place are different. The earlier revolutions occur amidst the Cold War period. The Arab Spring occurred in an independent environment, where no other event coincided with it. In addition, the two revolutionary movements differed based on the fact that the Arab Spring was the first revolutionary movement to be experienced in the Middle East (Plattner et al. 24). However, the earlier revolutionary movements came after each other and they were not the first to be experienced. Finally, the two revolutionary movements differed based on the tools used for communication. During earlier revolution, social media had not emerged; hence, other communication means were used. In the Arab Spring, social media were an essential communication tool that enhanced planning and organization of the revolts.
Role of social media in the similarities and differences
Certainly social media play in a role in defining the similarities and differences between the earlier revolutionary movements and the Arab Spring. In line with the similarities, earlier revolutionary movements did not use social media as a communication tool. Even so, the notable similarities in the two movements are closely aligned with democracy, which social media provides for in the Arab Spring (Howard & Muzammil 64). On a similar note, social media plays a role in the differences based on the obvious fact that social media as used in the Arab Spring resulted in an increased radicalization of the populations involved in the revolutionary movements.
Almarhoon, Najib. “Effect to Analyse the Arab Spring for Political Change in the Middle East.” Journal of Humanities and Social Sciences 15.1 (2013): 30-36. Print.
Howard, Philip N, and Muzammil M. Hussain. Democracy's Fourth Wave?: Digital Media and the Arab Spring. , 2013. Print.
Plattner, Marc, Way, Lucan, Care, John, and Reynolds, Andrew. “Comparing the Arab Revolts.” Journal of Democracy 22.4 (2011): 17-27. Print.