The Aesthetics of Dissent, Special Issue Introduction

Citation: Mohamed, Eid , Waleed F. Mahdi, and Hamid Dabashi. “The Aesthetics of Dissent: Culture and Politics of Transformation in the Arab World.” International Journal of Cultural Studies, vol. 23, issue 2, March 2020, pp. 141-194. First published online on September 19, 2019.

Abstract: Our special issue captures the interplay of media, politics, religion, and culture in shaping Arabs’ search for more stable governing models at a crossroads of global, regional, and national challenges through systematic and integrated analyses of evolving and contested Arab visual and performing arts in revolutionary and unstable public spheres. The issue presents a unique attempt to investigate these forms of cultural production as new modes of knowledge that shed light on the nature of social movements with the aim of expanding the critical reach of the disciplinary methods of political discourse and social theory. Contributors articulate the ways in which the Arab scene can contribute to the understanding of the rise of new social movements worldwide by exploring the methodological gaps in dominant Western discourses and theories.

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