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Because of Egypt’s central location as the crossroads between three continents, its access to the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, and its good conditions for agriculture, it has seen millennia of violent conflict as Middle Eastern empires, caliphates, and European countries have tried to control it. Egypt is perhaps best known now as having the largest of the protests that made up the Arab Spring of 2011.

History

From its long history of conflict emerges a narrative about the struggle both for political autonomy and national control over the country’s economic future. Thirty dynasties of pharaohs ruled Egypt up until Alexander the Great conquered the region and put an end to the pharaonic system of rule. Alexander began the Hellenistic culture that thrived in Egypt and ...

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