When hundreds of thousands of protestors streamed into Cairo’s Tahrir Square on Jan. 25, 2011, it sparked an uprising that toppled Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and inspired demonstrations around the world. UC Santa Barbara will mark the fifth anniversary of the uprising with a four-day workshop, “After Tahrir: Egyptian Revolutionary Experiences and Future Visions,” Jan. 23-26.
Organized by three UCSB professors with extensive experience in Egypt, the workshop will feature discussion panels led by scholars, journalists and activists. According to Sherene Seikaly, assistant professor of history at UCSB and one of the organizers, the collaborative workshop will “reimagine the shifting fabric of neoliberalism, the imperatives of popular sovereignty, the challenges of gender/sexuality/race justice in the context of repression and the cultures of authoritarianism that are shaping our times, globally.”
Although the symposium opens Saturday, Jan. 23, with a closed workshop, the public is invited to the Egyptian Insurgency Film Festival on Sunday, Jan. 24. Featuring a series of 18 film shorts, new media projects and a video installation, the festival runs from 2-5 p.m. in UCSB’s Pollock Theater. A discussion and reception with the filmmakers will follow the screenings.
“When we thought about ‘After Tahrir,’ bringing together revolutionary voices to think about the revolution, we considered a lot of the new media, because of the proliferation of cultural productions that emerged during these tumultuous years,” noted Sakr. “We thought we would curate a film fest that we could host in our state-of-the-art Pollock Theater. We were fortunate to invite several filmmakers and activists, or filmmaker-activists, videographers, artists, curators who are all engaged in the social movements one way or another.”
The public is also invited to attend a series of open panel discussions Monday, Jan. 25, in the McCune Conference Room in the Humanities & Social Sciences Building at UCSB. The all-day event will include five panels featuring more than 20 presenters on a variety of topics. “After Tahrir” concludes Tuesday, Jan. 26, with a graduate student workshop in the McCune Conference Room from 9-11:30 a.m.