Stanford scholars deconstruct Middle East uprisings by looking at Europe's past

Historians in the News

The recent political uprisings across the Middle East share similarities with the unrest that rippled through Eastern Europe in the late 20th century.

Stanford scholars say studying these connections may lead to a better understanding of what comes next in today's movements.

"We are all trying to puzzle through these various scenarios and understand what political possibilities lie before us," said Robert Crews, associate professor of history and director of the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES)....

The center recently hosted the 36th Annual Stanford-Berkeley Conference on Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies. Fifteen scholars participated in panel discussions on who makes revolutions, why some fail and how to interpret protest movements.

The daylong conference, "From Prague Spring to Arab Spring: Global and Comparative Perspectives on Protest and Revolution, 1968 – 2012," took on a unique twist from years past by looking beyond the boundaries of Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia. It drew an audience of high school students, undergraduates, faculty and others....

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