relative deprivation, Arab Spring, subjective feeling of happiness, quantitative analysis, protests, sociopolitical instability.
The article analyzes the concept of relative deprivation as a factor of socio-political instability in the course of the Arab Spring events using the methods of correlation and multiple regression analysis. Relative deprivation is operationalized through such an indicator as subjective feeling of happiness, based on the assumption that a person in a state of relative deprivation cannot feel subjectively happy. It is shown that the change in the level of subjective feeling of happiness between 2009 and 2010 is a powerful statistically significant predictor of the level of destabilization in the Arab countries in 2011. The next most powerful predictor is the average value of the subjective feeling of happiness in the corresponding country for 2010. At the same time, the fundamental economic indicators we tested while controlling for them, have turned out to be extremely weak and at the same time statistically insignificant predictors of the level of socio-political instability in the Arab countries in 2011.