Portraits of 'maîtrisards' - college-educated Tunisians

The ‘maîtisards’ (college-educated) are these famous unemployed graduates who have been left out by Ben Ali’s system. Forty of so of them have been camping since the 4th February 2011 in front of the Tunisian Ministry of Education. Their sit-in is in Impasse Virgile, squeezed between the ministry in charge of them, and the Ministry for Justice and Human Rights. A tent is used as head-quarters for these protestors who sleep in make-shift shelters at night. Impasse Virgile is blocked off with barbed wire that the army and police watch day and night.

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Jouda Hamraoui, 26, master's degree in Italian obtained in 2008, originally from Hammam-Lif.

Fathi Tozem Sghaïer, 47, master's degree in Theology, specialising in Belief and Philosophy, obtained in 1990. He spent 6 months in prison for political reasons and has not been able to work since.

Wassila Aouini, 33, master's degree in History-Geography obtained in 2005.

Nejib Mbarki, 33, master's degree in Computing obtained in 2003, originally from Kerouan.

Dalila Bel Hadj Salem, 37, master's degree in Arabic obtained in 2003, originally from Zaghouan.

Mustapha Mnafgui, 33, master's degree in Mathematics, unemployed since 2004, originally from Sidi Bouzid.

Azri That, 37, master's degree in French literature obtained in 2004.

Najoua Mouelhi, professor of French, hasn't been able to teach since 2003, the year in which her evaluation was falsified.

Mathlouthi Hayet, 32, master's degree in Accountancy obtained in 2004, originally from Ben Arous. She has worked on a farm, as well as other temporary jobs, in order to survive.

Nabil Zaeri, 32, master's degree in English obtained in 2002, originally from Kerouan.

Kouki Najoua, 33, master's degree in Contemporary History obtained in 2005. She has done various internships including in France's National Library. But to survive she works in a factory and as a babysitter.

Arari Talbi, 30, master's degree in Mathematics obtained in 2005, occasionally works as a photographer.