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Middle East

The Privilege of Revolution: Gender, Class, Space, and Affect in Egypt

Citation:

Winegar, Jessica. 2012. “The Privilege of Revolution: Gender, Class, Space, and Affect in Egypt.” American Ethnologist 39 (1): 67–70.

Author: Jessica Winegar

Abstract:

In this commentary, I challenge assumptions about political transformation by contrasting women's experiences at home during the Egyptian revolution with the image of the iconic male revolutionary in Tahrir Square. I call attention to the way that revolution is experienced and undertaken in domestic spaces, through different forms of affect, in ways deeply inflected by gender and class.

Keywords: Egypt, revolution, gender, class, space, Affect, generation

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Wars, Class, Gender, Women, Men, Gender Roles, Households Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Asia, Middle East Countries: Egypt

Year: 2012

Postcolonial Subjectivity: Masculinity, Shame, and Memory

Citation:

Treacher, Amal. 2007. “Postcolonial Subjectivity: Masculinity, Shame, and Memory.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 30 (2): 281–99.

Author: Amal Treacher

Abstract:

Egypt in 1952 was poised to overthrow the past and make a fresh and vigorous future. The revolutionary coup instigated and led by a group of Army Officers succeeded in overthrowing the monarchy and severely undermining British rule and influence. The hopes following this dramatic event were not borne out as the early successes did not lead to a more dynamic future. Instead, corruption continued, the economy declined, industry did not flourish, and an adequate welfare system was not put in place. There are various explanations for this state of affairs, and while these are valid and provide answers, they do not adequately address postcolonial subjectivity. Postcolonial masculine subjectivity is fraught, endures and has to be endured. This article will focus on shame and remembering/forgetting as states of mind, and silence as a response, in order to explore how a colonized past led to the wish for a different future while simultaneously inhibiting a different future to be made.

Keywords: Egypt, memory, postcolonial masculine subjectivity, shame, silence

Topics: Armed Conflict, National Liberation Wars, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Nationalism Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Asia, Middle East Countries: Egypt

Year: 2007

Dislocated Masculinity: Adolescence and the Palestinian Nation-in-exile

Citation:

Hart, Jason. 2008. “Dislocated Masculinity: Adolescence and the Palestinian Nation-in-exile.” Journal of Refugee Studies 21 (1): 64-81.

Author: Jason Hart

Abstract:

Taking as its starting-point emerging discussion about gender and nationalism, this article considers the masculinities constructed by and for adolescent males born into a Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan. I consider the relationship of these masculinities to the construction of the camp as a moral and socio-political space. Through the employment of ethnographic material, the article demonstrates the ways in which young males—through the performance of a particular, dominant vision of masculinity termed mukhayyamji—serve to reproduce the camp as authentic location of an exilic national community. The article also examines the implications for individual young men of this interplay between masculine performance and the reproduction of the camp as a moral and socio-political space. It explores the consequences both for those who fail or choose not to uphold the idealized, mukhayyamji adolescent masculinity and for those who evince the skills and qualities that this entails. It is argued that, while the former risk marginalization from the camp as a moral and socio-political community, the latter face marginalization from the economic life of wider Jordanian society and, with that, endanger the transition to social adulthood. Thus, a set of paradoxes emerges for young males that reflects the ambiguous position of the Palestinian refugees in Jordan at a specific moment in the history of Jordan and the Palestinian national struggle.

Keywords: masculinity, adolescence, refugees, Jordan, Palestinian

Topics: Occupation, Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Nationalism Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Jordan

Year: 2008

'The King of the Streets': Hip Hop and the Reclaiming of Masculinity in Jerusalem’s Shu’afat Refugee Camp

Citation:

Greenberg, Ela. 2009. “‘The King of the Streets:’ Hip Hop and the Reclaiming of Masculinity in Jerusalem’s Shu’afat Refugee Camp.” Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication 2 (2): 231-50.

Author: Ela Greenberg

Abstract:

This paper examines G-Town, a Palestinian hip hop crew from Shu‘afat Refugee Camp in Jerusalem. G-Town is part of a worldwide cultural phenomenon in which marginalized youths borrow and adapt African-American hip hop culture to their socio-political contexts. Their ability to convey authenticity as rap artists comes from living in a refugee camp, where they are exposed to drugs, violence, and limited opportunities. While G-Town uses rap music as a vehicle to express their opposition to the Israeli occupation, they also use rap music to reclaim their masculinity, especially as Palestinian masculinity has become increasingly emasculated by the practices of the occupation. With Tupac Shakur as their model, the members of G-Town have created for themselves a hyper form of masculinity as a way of coping with the occupation. Rapping has enabled G-Town to emerge as self-appointed leaders of local camp youth, and through their music, they encourage their mainly male audiences to resist the Israeli occupation, while they criticize those who remain passive and whose masculinity thus becomes questionable. Not all their peers, however, are supportive of rap music, and criticize G-Town for having given up practices traditionally associated with the camp’s notion of masculinity.

Keywords: Jerusalem, Shu'afat Refugee Camp, hip hop, rap, music, youth, masculinity, G-Town, palestine

Topics: Occupation, Displacement & Migration, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Gender, Boys, Masculinity/ies, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel

Year: 2009

Palestinian Prison Ontologies

Citation:

Bornstein, Avram. 2010.“Palestinian Prison Ontologies.” Dialectical Anthropology 34 (4): 459-72.

Author: Avram Bornstein

Abstract:

During the first intifada uprising (1987–1993), thousands of Palestinians were arrested annually, and mass incarceration affected as many as 100,000 families. Relying on several recent ethnographies, and other published research including some of my own, this article describes the contests over Palestinian prison ontology as organized by (a) the jailers, (b) the prisoners, (c) the families of prisoners, and (d) a service agency in the emerging Palestinian Authority. What becomes evident is that mass incarceration involves ontological struggles over the framing of justice, agency, and gender. The conclusion asks how these ontological struggles may be part of other modern prisons.

Keywords: political prisoners, Israel-Palestine, justice, gender, agency

Topics: Armed Conflict, National Liberation Wars, Occupation, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Justice, Nationalism Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2010

Honor Thy Sister: Selfhood, Gender, and Agency in Palestinian Culture

Citation:

Baxter, Diane. 2007. “Honor Thy Sister: Selfhood, Gender, and Agency in Palestinian Culture.” Anthropological Quarterly 80 (3): 737-75.

Author: Diane Baxter

Abstract:

In this article, I examine the ideology of honor among West Bank Palestinians most particularly as it relates to sexuality and gender relations within families. I contend that the iconic Arab and Palestinian subject of the ideal, gendered, connected self—a central concept that undergirds most representations of honor—elides the significance of the individual and obscures the rights and strengths of women and the obligations, vulnerabilities, and anxieties of men. Beyond a critique of representations of honor, subjectivities, and patriarchy, I suggest that ideological-culturally-based explanatory models of behavior favor coherency over ambivalence and untidiness. In terms of honor and the subjectivities that inform it, such explanations have led to an over-reliance on resistance as a method of analyzing "anomalies." I argue that for Palestinian women and men, subjectivity and agency are achieved within and are a reflection of structural, ideological, and experiential configurations, rather than as resistances to them.

Topics: Gender, Gender Analysis, Rights, Women's Rights, Sexuality Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2007

The Politics of Pain and the Uses of Torture

Citation:

Philipose, Liz. 2007. “The Politics of Pain and the Uses of Torture.” Signs 32 (4): 1047-71.

Author: Liz Philipose

Annotation:

Summary:
"Since September 11, 2001, the equation of Muslim with terrorist has lodged in the popular imagination in the United States. This conflation undermines the ability to distinguish between a few individuals who have committed or intend to commit acts of extrastate violence (terrorism) and the rest of the Muslim population, a population that consists of more than 1 billion people worldwide. Although public discussions of the so-called Muslim terrorist are often accompanied by disclaimers acknowledging that not all Muslims are a problem or that the political abuse of Islam, rather than Islam itself, is a problem, these caveats fail to dislodge the increasingly intractable conflation of Muslim with terrorist. This article examines how the racialized terrorist is produced through various war- on-terror tactics, including the indefinite detainment and torture of prisoners in U.S. military detention centers and the circulation of torture photographs" (Philipose 2007, 1047).

Topics: Gender, Masculinity/ies, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Race, Religion, Sexual Violence, SV against men, Terrorism Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2007

Gendering the Palestinian Political Cartoon

Citation:

Yaqub, Nadia. 2009. “Gendering the Palestinian Political Cartoon.” Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication 2 (2): 187–213.

Author: Nadia Yaqub

Abstract:

This paper examines the representation of the distribution of agency and responsibility across gender roles in Palestinian political cartoons. Cartoons are read to discover the nature of family dynamics, the relationship between the home and what lies outside it, and public and private sources of culture and Palestinian identity. Included are the work of Naji al-Ali whose widely- read cartoons appeared in Arabic language newspapers from the 1960’s until his assassination in 1987, and that of six contemporary cartoonists: Baha Boukhari, Khalil Abu Arafeh, Omayya Joha, Muhammed Sabaaneh, Naser al-Jafari, and Emad Hajjaj. In al-Ali’s cartoons, Palestinian men and their families are deeply affected by the pressures of dispossession, violence, and exploitation by elites. However, because the disruption affects mainly the public sphere of military action, politics, and wage labor, it is men who are most negatively affected by those pressures. They are often at a loss as to how to respond, and do not always make wise choices. On the other hand, al-Ali locates the idea of Palestine squarely in the private sphere, in women’s roles in biological and social reproduction. Because this idea is intact, women are able to perform their roles even in states of extreme violence and dispossession. The cartoons of later artists differ in that masculinity is divorced from military action, and although politics is largely ineffectual, men are endowed with agency in the public sphere. Women in the later cartoons continue to be defined chiefly, though not exclusively, by the domestic sphere, but Palestinian motherhood is in crisis and women in grave danger in many of these cartoons, a reflection of the crisis of the idea of Palestine as a whole and sound homeland.

Keywords: Palestinian, political cartoons, gender, representation, masculinity, Naji al-Ali

Topics: Gender, Women, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gender Roles, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2009

The Unlikely Terrorist: Women and Islamic Resistance in Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories

Citation:

Holt, Maria. 2010. “The Unlikely Terrorist: Women and Islamic Resistance in Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories.” Critical Studies on Terrorism 3 (3): 365–82.

Author: Maria Holt

Abstract:

Islamic resistance groups in Lebanon and the Palestinian territories have been accused of using terrorist tactics to achieve their aims. Although some critics suggest that such groups may also have hijacked the democratic agenda in ways that disadvantage women, their supporters claim that they are promoting a model of modernity that is empowering women. This article examines the reasons why some Lebanese Shi’i and Palestinian women support the resistance against Israeli invasion and occupation that is justified in terms of religion. Far from seeing the actions of Hizbullah in Lebanon and Hamas in the Palestinian territories as acts of terrorism, many women welcome the resistance as it brings dignity and meaning to their lives and enhances feelings of national identification.

Keywords: women, islamic resistance, Lebanon, Palestinian territories, modernity, female martyr, Hamas, Hizbullah

Topics: Gender, Women, Religion, Terrorism, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Lebanon, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2010

Motivated Migrants: (Re)framing Arab Women’s Experiences

Citation:

Killian, Caitlin, Jennifer Olmsted, and Alexis Doyle. 2012. “Motivated Migrants: (Re)framing Arab Women’s Experiences.” Women’s Studies International Forum 35 (6): 432–46. doi:10.1016/j.wsif.2012.09.006.

Authors: Caitlin Killian, Jennifer Olmsted, Alexis Doyle

Abstract:

Much of the existing literature on Arab migration either assumes women do not migrate or focuses on their experiences in the diaspora. Using two unique data sets, one collected in a source country (Palestine) and the other in a host country (France), we are able to make visible a type of migration that has remained largely invisible to date. Combining quantitative analysis and a case study approach, we examine patterns as well as the motivations for Arab women's migration, categorizing motivations as political, educational, and employment-related, but also highlighting how political and economic forces, as well as educational and familial motives, are difficult to disentangle, and may shift over time. We also contextualize our findings historically by exploring the multifaceted manner in which structural factors, such as political systems and economic forces, influence both decisions to leave one's home and reception in the host country in gendered ways. In particular, we find that in recent decades new opportunities have emerged for women to migrate to pursue educational goals.

Topics: Displacement & Migration, Migration, Economies, Economic Inequality, Education, Gender, Women Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East, Europe, Western Europe Countries: France, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2012

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