Nurturing the Arab Spring: What Can Be Done to Remove Existing Barriers to Freedom of Expression in the Arab World?

RAND Congressional Briefing Series


  • Lowell Schwartz Political Scientist, RAND Corporation
  • Jeffrey Martini Project Associate, RAND Corporation
  • Dalia Dassa Kaye Senior Political Scientist, RAND Corporation

Recent protests throughout North Africa and the Middle East have generated optimism about more open, tolerant, and democratic societies. History has shown that American efforts to promote cultural freedom and expression have assisted broader U.S. foreign policy objectives.

This briefing will discuss historical barriers to dissemination of books, film, and media that promote tolerance and critical thinking in the Arab world; examine a selection of creative works and how those barriers affected their distribution; and present policy recommendations to help these countries develop widely available and diverse media content.

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