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Syria and the Future of Authoritarianism
Abstract

Abstract:

In response to the uprisings of 2011, Syria’s Assad regime brought the full weight of its repressive apparatus down on the heads of peaceful protesters, provoking reactions that led gradually to civil war. Since then, the regime has been adapting to the new challenges posed by mass uprisings through a process of “authoritarian learning,” and at least some of its methods are being applied elsewhere in the region. It seems that the future of Arab authoritarianism, like that of the Assad regime itself, will be darker, more repressive, more sectarian, and even more deeply resistant to democratization than in the past.