More freedom in universities but little change

Portraits of toppled Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi may no longer adorn the walls of Tripoli University, but it is likely to be a long time before new values and higher standards become entrenched, reports AFP.

The signature red, black and green of the 2011 revolt that put an end to 42 years of stifling dictatorship now decorate the corridors. And inside classrooms, things are also beginning to look a little different. The curriculum no longer expounds on the slain dictator’s views on politics, the military and economics – which were outlined in his ‘Green Book’ manifesto and fleshed out over endless speeches that were then documented in annual tomes.

Although it may take many years to revamp the system completely, the culture is slowly shifting. Political science professor Ahmed al-Atrash says the university now allows demonstrations, but it is also making efforts to promote the concepts of civilised expression and organised protest in order to avoid major disruptions. “We don’t know the ABCs of democracy,” said Atrash, who tries to promote the idea of “civilised, democratic dialogue” in his classroom.
Full report on the Al Arabiya News site