Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Political Science

First Advisor

Michele Angrist




Arab Spring, repression, regimes, authoritarianism, rule


The endurance of Arab authoritarian regimes has been quite daunting, especially with the rise of the Arab Spring. Some Arab regimes have ruled with domination and repression since the nineteenth century. These regimes stand out globally with respect to the number of democratic countries. Even with the recent rebellions, the rise of the Arab Spring, starting in 2011, a number of Arab regimes still continue to thrive and remain intact under authoritarian rule. This includes quite a number of Arab states that have faced uprisings during the Arab Spring, but have not implemented a new democratic system or elected a new leader, such as Syria. With this fascinating reality of Arab authoritarian regimes, I set out to find the reason for the endurance of Arab authoritarian regimes, noting that this was not a simple coincidence. My goal was to find out what exactly allowed Arab authoritarian regimes to remain stable, whether it was political strategies or economic resources, even in the face of the Arab Spring. Overall, I was determined to obtain a grip on one solid and plausible reason as to why Arab authoritarian leaders have endured for so long, or at least a brief number of reasons. Arab authoritarianism has allowed the regimes to endure since the nineteenth century and continue to do so with protests and grievances amongst citizens. I decided to choose the topic of Arab authoritarian endurance because I understood the importance in exposing the backbone of the regimes. I truly believe that learning about the reasons for Arab authoritarian endurance empowers people of all backgrounds with the knowledge of strategies that dictates the lives of people in Arab states. Not only does this topic allow people to understand the power of Arab regimes in being able to rule with a strong fist, but also enables people to comprehend how most Arab authoritarian regimes are able to continue to real with a stable regime even with the recent Arab uprisings. The endurance of Arab authoritarianism is most important in being able to analyze and compare Arab regimes that have fallen to the Arab Spring and the ones that continue to maintain durability. In order to complete this research task, I embarked on extensive research and used various methodologies. My thesis is split into four sections, with two main chapters. My first section is the literature review. I completed this portion by researching a broad range of arguments by a number of different scholars, such as the politicized education system, the condition of the coercive forces, hydrocarbon exports, and so on for the endurance of Arab authoritarian regimes. These arguments included reasons prior to the Arab Spring. The arguments used in my literature review all fall under political, economic, cultural, security, or educational reasons. My two main chapters consist of Jordan and Algeria. I chose these two regimes as my core chapters to create a balanced argument, as Jordan is a constitutional monarchy and Algeria is a semi-presidential republic. My methodologies for these chapters included conducting extensive research on each country with concern to the recent protests, government responses, and theories amongst scholars as to why these regimes continue to endure even after the Arab Spring. I also learned about the structure of each regime, such as its components, government supporters, government opponents, and security forces. I provided the structure of each regime in the beginning of each core chapter. Each of these countries have unique factors specific to their endurance, which helped me produce a compelling thesis.