The Rise of The Lesser Notables in Cairo’s Popular Quarters: Patronage Politics of The National Democratic Party and The Muslim Brotherhood
Fahmy, Mohamed (Menza) Ibrahim
Date: 1 June 2010
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
PhD in Arab & Islamic Studies
Ever since the military takeover of 1952, the post-monarchic political system of Egypt has been dependent upon a variety of mechanisms and structures to establish and further consolidate its powerbase. Among those, an intertwined web of what could be described as ‘patronage politics’ emerged as one of the main foundations of these tools ...
Ever since the military takeover of 1952, the post-monarchic political system of Egypt has been dependent upon a variety of mechanisms and structures to establish and further consolidate its powerbase. Among those, an intertwined web of what could be described as ‘patronage politics’ emerged as one of the main foundations of these tools and was utilized by the regime to establish the fundamentals of its rule. Throughout the post-1952 era, political patrons and respective clients were existent in Egyptian politics, shaping, to a great extent, the policies implemented by Egypt's rulers at the apex of the political system, as well as the tactics orchestrated by the populace within the middle and lower echelons of the polity. This study aims at analyzing the factors that ensured the durability of patronage networks within the Egyptian polity, primarily focusing on the sort of social structural reconfiguration that has been taking place in the popular communities of Egypt in the beginning of the 21st Century. Dissecting the area of Misr Al Qadima as an exemplar case study of Cairo’s popular quarters, the research mainly focuses on examining the role of the lesser notables, those middle patrons and clients that exist on the lower levels of the Egyptian polity within the ranks of the National Democratic Party and the Muslim Brotherhood. Henceforth, the sociopolitical agency of these lesser notabilities shall constitute the prime concern of the writing and, in doing so; this research also attempts to draw some linkage between the micro-level features of the popular polities of Cairo and the macro-level realities of the Egyptian polity at large, in the contemporary period.
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