Regime-Critical Media and Arab Challenges and Opportunities post-Arab Spring

Call for Papers


Deadline for submitting abstracts 15 May 2019



Regime-Critical Media and Arab Diaspora:  Challenges and Opportunities post-Arab Spring


An interdisciplinary conference hosted by


‘Mediatized diaspora (MEDIASP): Contentious Politics among Arab Media Users in Europe’


Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies,


University of Copenhagen, Denmark, 


5-6 September 2019



Keynote speakers: Naomi Sakr, Myria Georgiou, Tourya Guaaybess, Carola Richter



The research project ‘Mediatized diaspora (MEDIASP): Contentious Politics among Arab Media Users in Europe’ at the University of Copenhagen is pleased to announce the call for papers for a two-day conference on regime-critical media – produced in or outside the Middle East and North Africa – and their users in diaspora.


After the Arab Spring, political developments in the Arab countries have varied from sustained civil war in Syria and Yemen to fragile political democracy in Tunisia; from successive regime changes in Egypt to regime maintenance in Bahrain; and from ongoing uprisings in Sudan to “successful” pressure against the regime to resign in Algeria. These developments have a direct impact on the conditions for regime-critical and politically mobilized media and for Arab diasporas living outside the Arab world. Regime-critical media have faced new restrictions and challenges in the Middle Eastern and North African countries post-Arab Spring, letting several media to move to other countries. Likewise, the situation of political activists either still living in the Middle East or in diaspora has greatly changed and their contributions have taken on a new significance.


Hence, the overall questions are: how do regime-critical media produced for the Middle Eastern or North-African audiences meet new challenges and opportunities? How do Middle Eastern and North-African diaspora groups mobilize politically and engage in transnational political activities? How does the audiences’ use of regime-critical media influences political action formation in diaspora?


We invite conference papers that examine the regime-critical media produced both in and outside the Middle East, and/or how media practices of Middle Eastern and North-African political activists in diaspora contribute to political transformation. The conference aims at exploring and discussing the potentially wide variations in regime-critical media and the Arab diasporas’ practices of using them. Both theoretical and empirical contributions are welcome. 


The conference welcomes papers on any of the following – or allied – topics or themes:


Regime-critical media in the Middle East and North African countries:


–        The history (and developments) of Arab critical media


–        Politicization of critical media after the 2011 Arab Spring


–        Social media in light of political repression


–        Critical media coverage of social movements


–        Critical media censorship and ownership


–        The performing of conflict by critical media


–        Violence and affective media events


–        Audio-visual modalities of critical media


–        Art, creativity, alternative features of critical media


–        Virtual mobility and glocality of critical media


–        The legal framework of Arab media


–        The future of Arab critical media



Political activism and media users of regime-critical media:


–        Media practices in the diaspora


–        Media and migrationhood


–        Practices of citizen journalism


–        Political activism in digital media


–        Cyber activism post-Arab Spring


–        Transnational media practice


–        Mediatized negotiations and contestations of current developments


–        Connective and collective action formations


–        Electronic armies (committees) on social media


Abstract Submission


The deadline for submitting proposals for individual papers is May 15. Please submit a title and abstract of about 250 words, in addition to your name, institutional affiliation and contact information.


Please send your abstracts or any enquiries to

A selection of accepted papers will be published in a special issue in Journal of Arab & Muslim Media Research in April 2020 (Volume 13, Issue 1).

Key dates 


–        20 March 2019 – Call for papers is announced


–        15 May 2019 – Deadline for submitting abstracts


–        22 May 2019 – Notification of accepted abstracts


–        4 August 2019 – Deadline for registration


–        1 September 2019 – Deadline for full paper submission, 7500 words


–        5-6 September 2019 – The conference takes place in Copenhagen


–        6 October 2019 – Deadline for paper submission after revisions


–        3 November 2019 – Peer reviewer’s feedback will be send to author


–        1 December 2019 – Deadline for submission of final paper


The conference does not cover travel or accommodation costs for the participants.


Conference host  


The host of the conference is the research project ‘Mediatized diaspora (MEDIASP): Contentious Politics among Arab Media Users in Europe’. You can read more about the project here:



The project has its home at the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies (language, religion and society), University of Copenhagen.



For more information about the conference, please contact the organizing committee at The organizing committee consists of Dr. Ehab Galal, Dr. Thomas Fibiger, Dr. Mostafa Shehata, and PhD-fellow Zenia Yonus.