Laila Lalami is the author of Hope and Other Dangerous Pursuits and Secret Son. She is currently an associate professor at the University of California, Riverside. Follow her on Twitter at:

French intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévy wrote yesterday on the Beast, "What I do know is that nothing can justify a man being thus thrown to the dogs." Laila Lalami knows a few more things. Who the real dogs are, for one.

Right up until the end, political theorists the world over insisted that what happened in Tunisia couldn't—or shouldn't—happen in Egypt. Laila Lalami on why Westerners often underestimate the Arab world.