About Leila Zaki Chakravarti

Leila Zaki Chakravarti is a Research Fellow at the SOAS Centre for Gender Studies, London University. She is currently publishing a monograph based on her PhD fieldwork exploring constructs of class, gender and religion within an export-orientated garment manufacturing factory in Port Said, Egypt. Her current research interests focus on constructs of masculinity within the workspaces of professional football.


Articles by Leila Zaki Chakravarti

This week's editor

Ray Filar

Ray Filar is co-editor of Transformation and a freelance journalist.

Constitutional conventions: best practice

From Strongman to Superman: Sisi the saviour of Egypt

Egypt’s current political scene is marked by ’Sisi-mania’, as the new leader’s supporters scramble to snap up the latest items of Sisi-branded consumer kitsch. A gendered reading of this ‘patriotic consumerism’ reveals its role in negotiating citizenship within Egypt’s refashioned political order.

Football, religion and politics in Egypt

As Egypt’s military-backed regime moves to further consolidate its power, no spheres of civil society are free of state encroachment. Leila Zaki Chakravarti analyses the intricate relationships between football, religion and politics in the settling of political scores in post-revolutionary Egypt.

Takeovers and makeovers: using the landscape to re-write history in post-revolutionary Cairo

Clearing sites of mass protest in Cairo and stamping them with symbolic representations of their preferred narrative of order and stability, the military authorities are striving to relegate the revolution to the past. Yet, these new cityscape makeovers continue to be contested.

Performing masculinity: the football ultras in post-revolutionary Egypt

The displays of masculine assertiveness by the football ultras in Egypt and their strongly gendered form of youth activism points to the need to look beyond clichés about unspecified notions of revolutionary youth. Initially opposed to state authorities, are the ultras refashioning themselves as new political players?

A tale of two cities: blood, football and politics in Egypt

As the two cities of Cairo and Port Said remain engulfed in the worst violence seen since the Revolution, the entwining in Egypt of ‘football and the game of politics’ could hardly be more complete. And the game, it would appear, has not even reached half-time, says Leila Zaki Chakravarti.   

Chez Morsi : palace petitioners and street entrepreneurs in post-Mubarak Egypt

As soon as Egypt’s first democratically-elected Islamist leader moved into the Presidential Palace, the surrounding streets became thronged by huge unruly crowds waving petitions addressed to the new ruler. Alongside them appeared an army of street vendors vigorously peddling their wares. Both forms of street action represent ways under the new political order for the disadvantaged to claim social and economic redress for past neglect and injustice.

Entrepreneurs of the revolution: jockeying for livelihood and security in post-Arab Spring Cairo

In the context of lax policing in the aftermath of the Arab spring, Cairo’s affluent neighbourhoods have seen the incursion of new ‘street entrepreneurs ’ from the city’s poorer areas and outskirts. Educated, business-savvy and fleet of foot, they articulate a new sense of entitlement that blends Tahrir Square’s calls for change with the ‘moral economy’ rhetoric of Nasser’s original revolution

Football and the game of politics in Egypt

The Supreme Council of the Armed Forces' call for an official inquiry into football violence, following the deaths of 74 al-Ahly team supporters in February this year, has been rejected by most clubs as a sham designed to obscure the blame that belongs to the Mubarak regime’s structures which orchestrated, and continue to orchestrate, violence.

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