Amr Hamzawy

Wednesday, 31 October 2018, 5.00 pm - 6.30 pm |
Forum Transregionale Studien, Wallotstr. 14, 14193 Berlin

The Meaning of Justice and the Rule of Law in Post-2013 Egypt

Amr Hamzawy
(Stanford University / Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin 2018/19)

Chair: Georges Khalil
(EUME / Forum Transregionale Studien)

Competing understandings of justice and the rule of law have emerged in post-2013 Egypt. In order to deconstruct, if not ridicule, the democratically inspired definition of the two concepts which was dominant in 2011 and 2012, the military backed government pushed forward a populist understanding of justice as the elimination of state enemies and of the rule of law as a procedural matter which only the judiciary is allowed to address. Social justice, transitional justice, transparency, accountability, and safeguards of personal and civil rights have been subsequently excluded from the official discourse. On the other hand, Islamist as well as liberal opponents of the government have sought to combat the official populism with a populism in reverse which either defines justice and the rule of law in a religious manner or frames it as a mere political struggle.

Amr Hamzawy is a Senior Researcher at Stanford University. He studied political science and developmental studies in Cairo, The Hague, and Berlin. He was previously an associate professor of political science at Cairo University and a professor of public policy at the American University in Cairo. Between 2016 and 2017, he served as a senior fellow in the Middle East program and the Democracy and Rule of Law program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Washington, DC. In the academic year of 2018/19, he is a Fellow of the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin.
His research and teaching interests as well as his academic publications focus on democratization processes in Egypt, tensions between freedom and repression in the Egyptian public space, political movements and civil society in Egypt, contemporary debates in Arab political thought, and human rights and governance in the Arab world.
He is a former member of the People’s Assembly after being elected in the first Parliamentary elections in Egypt after the January 25, 2011 revolution. He is also a former member of the Egyptian National Council for Human Rights. Hamzawy contributes a weekly op-ed to the Egyptian independent newspaper Shorouk and a weekly op-ed to the London based newspaper al-Quds al-Arabi.

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