Wired Citizenship: Youth Learning and Activism in the Middle East, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Wired Citizenship

Youth Learning and Activism in the Middle East, 1st Edition

Edited by Linda Herrera


208 pages

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Wired Citizenship examines the evolving patterns of youth learning and activism in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). In today’s digital age, in which formal schooling often competes with the peer-driven outlets provided by social media, youth all over the globe have forged new models of civic engagement, rewriting the script of what it means to live in a democratic society. As a result, state-society relationships have shifted—never more clearly than in the MENA region, where recent uprisings were spurred by the mobilization of tech-savvy and politicized youth.

Combining original research with a thorough exploration of theories of democracy, communications, and critical pedagogy, this edited collection describes how youth are performing citizenship, innovating systems of learning, and re-imagining the practices of activism in the information age. Recent case studies illustrate the context-specific effects of these revolutionary new forms of learning and social engagement in the MENA region.


"At a time when much of what is written about youth online activity in the Middle East is patently hyperbolic or woefully simplistic, Wired Citizenship offers a refreshing corrective to much of the mythology surrounding youth engagement in a time of revolution. Herrera has compiled a truly unlikely volume that actively problematizes and courageously deconstructs the most prescient propositions on young people's digital practices. Topically and thematically, the book is expansive yet consummately nuanced, covering a vast geographic terrain and unsettling a broad range of canons—from literacy and education to mass communication and international relations."—Adel Iskandar, Georgetown University, USA

Wired Citizenship: Youth Learning and Activism in the Middle East is an excellent new collection on virtual learning for critical citizenship in the digital age. With its focus on wired and revolutionary activity it also investigates the troubled geopolitics of North Africa and the Middle East. It is a timely and valuable comment on the ‘Facebook Revolution’ and essential reading for understanding the Arab youth activism and the power of the Internet.”—Michael A. Peters, University of Waikato, New Zealand

"In addition to its significant contribution to the fields of youth culture and the sociology of youth, Wired Citizenship calls for a rethinking of the way we perceive the concepts of citizenship and de- mocracy. I hope this call will also be an inspiration for the researchers of youth studies to think about youth political participation beyond the limited patterns that seem given and unchangeable owing to the old and conventional ways of doing politics." —KULT Online Journal

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction: Wired and Revolutionary in the Middle East and North Africa

Linda Herrera & Rehab Sakr

Section I: Virtual Learning for Critical Citizenship

Chapter 2: Youth and Citizenship in the Digital Age: A View from Egypt

Linda Herrera (republished from Harvard Educational Review)

Chapter 3: Morocco On-Trial: De-colonial Logic and Transformative Practice in Cyberspace

Charis Boutieri

Chapter 4: Children’s Citizenship: Revolution and the Seeds of an Alternative Future in Egypt

Chiara Diana

Chapter 5: Cyberspace in Turkey: A “youthful” space for expressing powerful discontent and suffering

Demet Lüküslü

Chapter 6: Distorting Digital Citizenship: Khaled Said, Facebook, and Egypt’s


Amro Ali & Dina El-Sharnouby

Section II: Internet, Geopolitics and Redefining the Political

Chapter 7: “Hungry for Freedom” Palestine Youth Activism in the Era of Social Media

Mira Nabulsi

Chapter 8: Opening Networks, Sealing Borders: Youth and Racist Discourse on the Internet

Miranda Christou & Elena Ioannidou

Chapter 9: Computer Intimacy: Digitally-Mediated Democratization of Arab Youth Culture

Catherine Cornet

Chapter 10: “We Are Not All Malala”: Children and Citizenship in the Age of Internet & Drones

Fauzia Rahman

Chapter 11: The Power of Online Networks: Citizenship among Muslim Brotherhood Cyber Youth

Rehab Sakr

Chapter 12: Digital Technology as Surveillance: The Green Movement in Iran

Narges Bajoghli

About the Editor

Linda Herrera is Associate Professor of Education Policy, Organization and Leadership at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, USA.

About the Series

Critical Youth Studies

Set against the massive social, cultural, and material dislocations of the new century, Critical Youth Studies interrogates the complex cultural dimensions of young people’s everyday lives today. Drawing together the work of both well known and emerging scholars, this series focuses on "youth studies" as a self-constituting, trans-disciplinary area of inquiry. Operating largely at the specific intersection of education, sociology, and media studies, Critical Youth Studies features authored and edited books, drawing on a range of methods and approaches, treating the span of issues most relevant to youth today.

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