Book Launch: Soldiers, Spies, and Statesmen: Egypt's Road to Revolt by Hazem Kandil

Wed, November 28, 2012 7:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

(View all book launches »)

Doors open at 6:30pm

Revolutions are difficult to understand and almost impossible to predict. Egypt’s 2011 revolt was no exception. The military’s abandonment of Mubarak—a turning point for the revolt—confounded many observers, who assumed that the leader and the generals stood or fell together. The officers, it was thought, ruled from behind the scenes and simply swapped the figures in the spotlight to preserve the status quo.

In a challenge to this conventional view, Hazem Kandil presents the revolution as the latest episode in an ongoing power struggle between the three components of Egypt’s authoritarian regime: the military, the security services and the political apparatus. A detailed study of the interactions within this invidious triangle over six decades of war, conspiracy and sociopolitical transformation, Soldiers, Spies, and Statesmen (Verso 2012) is the first systematic analysis of how Egypt metamorphosed from a military into a police state—and what that means for the future of its revolution.

Tickets: $5 suggested donation



Hazem Kandil is a Lecturer in Sociology and St. Catharine’s College Fellow at Cambridge University. He has also taught at the American University in Cairo and the University of California, Los Angeles.


“Hazem Kandil has written a brilliant revisionist account of the origins of the Egyptian Revolution. He focuses on how the regime’s repressive forces fell apart, making revolution possible. I found it eye-opening and convincing— a triumph.” – Michael Mann, author of The Dark Side of Democracy

“This is a fascinating book that should be required reading for anybody interested in Egypt’s past and what happens next. It gives a unique insight into what the military and security forces were thinking and doing, and why they were not the monolithic force that most had imagined.” – Patrick Cockburn, author of The Occupation

“The best account of Egypt’s central power structure in the last two decades.” – Roger Owen, author of The Rise and Fall of Arab Presidents for Life


Alwan's Literary & Humanities Program is made possible, in part, with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in Partnership with the City Council.

Last updated: 2012-11-05 13:12:52

Alwan for the Arts

16 Beaver Street, 4th Floor
(between Broad St. and Broadway)
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732-3261

Alwan Auction 2016

Join Our Mailing List:



Classes are currently being scheduled. Please check back soon for updates.



There are currently no upcoming events.


16 Beaver Street
4th Floor
New York, NY 10004
(646) 732 3261
Email Us

Alwan for the Arts is accessible to people with disabilities. Please call 646 732 3261 in advance, or, buzz at the door to arrange a ramp.

© 2020 Alwan for the Arts

Hosting donated by:, the Arabic Encyclopedia