The Middle East Will Never Be the Same Again: The Rise of the Millennial

The Institute of Middle East Studies

by Arthur Brown

My society is full of contradictions: a society that dissolves the identity of the individual into the identity of the group, a society that is afraid of change, a society that praises freedom of expression but ultimately suppresses it. One learns to remain silent, to become a coward, to accept reality regardless of the discrepancies. One is taught that things in Lebanon will remain the way they are no matter how hard one tries to bring about change. There is no logic in our society. We must live up to the expectations of the family, the community, our religious sect, and political party – but I have no intention of doing so.[1]

With these words, Lebanese student “Yasmine” encapsulates all the salient energy and potential of the millennial generation. As Khalaf and Khalaf go on to suggest, ‘…youth can be subservient agents to repressive state authority…

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