A Grand Delusion. Democracy and Economic Reform in Egypt
London : I. B. Tauris
Library of Modern Middle East Studies
Egypt, reform, democracy, civil liberties
The author argues in this text that the much-vaunted reform and liberalisation of Egypt's economy has been partial and selective, far from beneficial to all Egyptians. While the encouragement of the private sector has indeed benefited some, it has failed to improve the standard of living of others, in particular the lower middle classes and a large part of the landless rural population. Most importantly, economic reform and liberalisation have failed to produce a greater degree of political democracy: notions of political accountability, clean elections, a genuinely free press, the containment of police powers have turned out to be a great delusion which masks restrictions on political participation and civil liberties.