The prominent American-Egyptian journalist Mona Eltahawy has been released from government custody as Egypt’s post-Mubarak transition is showing further signs of strain. Protesters are gathering once again in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, expressing angst over who will lead the new government. A series of military arrests landed many innocent people in police custody, some of whom were journalists and bloggers. Eltahawy communicated by Twitter before being arrested: Pitch black, only flashing ambulance lights and air thick with gas.
What’s the Big Idea?
After hours of silence, another Tweet: Beaten arrested in interior ministry. Almost immediately, #freemona became a virtual center for concern and support that trended around the world. Since her release, and visit to the hospital to care for a broken wrist and arm, she has spoken about being sexually assaulted in the ministry. The even is another testament to social media’s power to publicize injustice immediately and garner a wide audience against it. What is the relationship between gestural politics, expressing concern and taking action?