There are many ways of approaching the study of revolution in the contemporary world. According to a narrow definition, “revolution is a forcible overthrow of a government or social order, in favor of a new system”. In that perspective, current revolutionary dynamics in Lebanon appear to several observers (whether anti-revolutionary or skeptics) as “minor disturbances”. According to these ‘experts’, as long as the socio-political and economic systems are “unchanged”, the so-called “hirak (movement) is not worthy to be called revolution”, and “will soon end”.
However, a different definition of “revolution” – the one I use and develop – makes it appear as an ongoing project of deep confrontation, resistance, deconstruction, reconstruction and systemic transformation. This project has no start per se, nor a specific end. In other words, Revolution with a big R is a process, and the current revolutionary dynamics are only but a step towards overturning existing conditions and generating alternative socio-political and economic orders. It is fluid, changing and evolving according to the context in which it takes place and through the thoughts and actions of those who actively participate in its development, of those who choose to be passive, and of those who fight it.
The Revolution in Lebanon isn’t therefore a static object that can either be a “success” or a “failure”. It consists of several current dimensions and historical layers simultaneously, and when it is not roaring in public spaces, it is boiling in the minds, adapting, learning and bouncing back…
As long as there are inequalities, social injustice, exclusion, oppression, violence, war, etc., the Revolution will not end.
As long as there are possibilities of change, the Revolution will not end.
As long as our backs are to the wall and our only way is forward and through our fears, the Revolution will not end.
As long as there are no limitations we choose to impose on our will, imagination, resilience, patience and freedom, the Revolution will not end.