Inclusion de-moderation hypothesis: Egyptian secularists in democratization
Democratization could lead to de-moderation. This is the proposed argument of this thesis which studies the impact of political openings on secularist forces in Egypt between 1970 and 2013, a timeframe which crosses Sadat, Mubarak, and the post-revolution periods, witnessing several waves of repression and inclusion. The thesis presents two secular cases: the Tagammu Party, which was pushed towards statism by political liberalization in the 1980s, and the Revolutionary Socialists, who shifted in an anti-institutional direction after democratization in 2011-13. These opposing pathways seem to challenge the inclusion-moderation hypothesis. Introducing the moderation theory to secular actors opens a broad spectrum in which to comprehend the under-studied field of Arab secularism and rethinking, and at the same time, the scope of moderation hypotheses. The study demonstrates how these two parties responded to political openings, evaluated political opportunities, and assessed the feasibility of the elections and their capacity to compete with other opposition rivals, namely the Islamists.