The Subtle Dynamics of Power Struggles in Tunisia: Local media since the Arab Uprisings

Open Access Journal | ISSN: 2183-2439

Article | Open Access

The Subtle Dynamics of Power Struggles in Tunisia: Local media since the Arab Uprisings


  • Noah Bassil School of Social Sciences, Macquarie University, Australia
  • Nourhan Kassem School of Social Sciences, Macquarie University, Australia


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Abstract:  This article contributes to the analysis of local media and democratic transformation in Tunisia since the Arab Uprisings. It aims to assess the extent to which pluralism, freedom of expression, and participation—central tenets of democratisation—are evident at the local level. Tunisian local media, unlike the national media, is relatively free of governmental control. Local media is also decentralised. It is this autonomy from the government which makes the analysis of local media fundamentally important for understanding politics in Tunisia. While national media is linked to the most powerful elements in the country, the diversity of voices within the media at the local level provides an opportunity to grasp the grievances, struggles, and agency of people in Tunisia, especially the most marginalised communities. This article will detail the changes in the media landscape, especially for local media, in Tunisia and connect our analysis of local media to better understand the Tunisia that has developed between dictatorship and democracy and the extent that the fledgling Tunisian democracy can withstand its most recent test.

Keywords:  Arab uprisings; democratisation; local media; MENA; proximity journalism; Tunisian media

Published:   17 December 2021


DOI: https://doi.org/10.17645/mac.v9i4.4452


© Noah Bassil, Nourhan Kassem. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits any use, distribution, and reproduction of the work without further permission provided the original author(s) and source are credited.