Laughter in the Dark: Egypt to the Tune of Change by Yasmine El Rashidi
A decade ago, millions of Egyptians took to the streets in a people-led revolution that captivated the world's attention and sent ripples across the Middle East. But the so-called "Arab Spring" quickly faded, and a return to the status quo--of authoritarian rule--was cemented. What happened to the energy and desire for change?
In Egypt, the answer lies in its youth, who comprise the bulk of the country's fast-growing 106 million citizens. Sixty percent of the population is under the age of twenty-five, and their world views are very much influenced by social media: TikTok is their primary language and medium of choice. Music is their means of expression--in particular, a thriving hip-hop scene known as mahraganat. This music has given voice to deep dissatisfaction with the Egyptian state and the overall conditions of Egyptian society and culture. Could this be the start of a force for change? Laughter in the Dark is a riveting portrait of a country that is being transformed, for good or bad, by the rise of a fresh youth culture.