Between the Signifier and the Signified Falls the Signification: Reflections on the Use of Political Terms in the Egyptian 2011 Events

Ahmed Abdel Azim ElShiekh


The present paper explores the discrepancy between original sense and actual use of certain political terms with particular reference to the Egyptian 25th of January uprising/revolution. The researcher casts light on the frequently controversial if not even self-contradictory use of these terms to denote hardly related concepts and, at times at least, the down right antonym of the original concept in question. An attempt is also made, whenever possible, to compare and contrast, if necessary, the same political terms in relation to the 23rd of July 1952 revolution. The researcher adopts an analytical comparative/contrastive approach. This paper, broadly speaking, makes use of semantics and pragmatics to reflect on the topic under study.

Key words: Political terminology; Democracy; Revolution; Uprising; Justice; Freedom of thought and speech; Signifier; Signified and signification


Political terminology; Democracy; Revolution; Uprising; Justice; Freedom of thought and speech; Signifier; Signified and signification


English Sources

Bertell, O. (2010) How Does Political Science Deal with Democracy? How Should It Do So?” Retrieved 12 February, 2012 from:

Bury, J.B. (2004). A History of Freedom of Thought. UK: Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc.

Definitions of Semiotics (2009). Retrieved 21 April, 2012 from:

Herman, D. (2002). Saussure and the Grounds of Interpretation. Retrieved 23 March, 2010 from:

SaSaussure, F.D. (1983). Course in General Linguistics. London: Duckworth.

Tshoose, C. I. (2011). Justice Delayed Is Justice Denied. Retrieved 24 May, 2012 from

Webster’s Third New International Dictionary, Unabridged (2002). Retrieved 23 February, 2010 from:

Arabic Sources

د. السعيد، رفعت. (1999). مجرد ذكريات. القاهرة. مكتبة الأسرة. الهيئة المصرية العامة للكتاب

د. عبد الناصر، هدى. (2-6-2012) “حتما‏..‏ سأنتخب الدولة المدنية”. الأهرام. القاهرة.

د. حرب، أسامة الغزالى. (6-6-2012). “الرئيس أحمد شفيق”. الأهرام. القاهرة



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c)

Share us to:   


Online Submission


How to do online submission to another Journal?

If you have already registered in Journal A, then how can you submit another article to Journal B? It takes two steps to make it happen:

1. Register yourself in Journal B as an Author

Find the journal you want to submit to in CATEGORIES, click on “VIEW JOURNAL”, “Online Submissions”, “GO TO LOGIN” and “Edit My Profile”. Check “Author” on the “Edit Profile” page, then “Save”.

2. Submission

Go to “User Home”, and click on “Author” under the name of Journal B. You may start a New Submission by clicking on “CLICK HERE”.

We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases:;;

 Articles published in Studies in Literature and Language are licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY).


Address: 1055 Rue Lucien-L'Allier, Unit #772, Montreal, QC H3G 3C4, Canada.
Telephone: 1-514-558 6138 
Website: Http://; Http://;;

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture