Explaining Divergent Outcomes of the Arab Spring: The Significance of Gender and Women's Mobilizations


Moghadam, Valentine M. 2018. "Explaining Divergent Outcomes of the Arab Spring: The Significance of Gender and Women's Mobilizations." Politics, Groups, and Identities 6 (4): 666-81.

Author: Valentine Moghadam


The Arab Spring has been extensively analyzed but the presence or absence of violent protests and the divergent outcomes of the uprising that encompassed the Arab region have not been explained in terms of the salience of gender and women’s mobilizations. I argue that women’s legal status, social positions, and collective action prior to the Arab Spring helped shape the nature of the 2011 mass protests as well as the political and social outcomes of individual countries. I compare and contrast two sets of cases: Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia, which saw non-violent protests and relatively less repression on the part of the state; and Bahrain, Libya, Syria, and Yemen, where states responded to the protests, whether violent or non-violent, with force and repression, and where women and their rights have been among the principal victims. I also show why women fared worse in Egypt than in Morocco and Tunisia.

Keywords: Arab Spring, women's rights, women's mobilizations, outcomes, violence, democratization

Topics: Democracy / Democratization, Conflict, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Hierarchies, Nonviolence, Rights, Women's Rights, Violence Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Asia, Middle East Countries: Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen

Year: 2018

Fluid Masculinities? Case Study of the Kingdom of Bahrain


Karolak, Magdalena, Hala Guta, and Neva Helena Alexander. 2014. “Fluid Masculinities? Case Study of the Kingdom of Bahrain.” International and Cultural Psychology 4: 159–74.

Authors: Magdalena Karolak, Hala Guta, Neva Helena Alexander


The need to assess male social roles and gender identity in the modern social context prompted the emergence of a gender specialized psychology devoted to the study of men (Levant, R. F., & Pollack, W. S. (1995). A new psychology of men. New York: Basic, p. 1). Indeed, the breadth of the study of psychology of men focuses on the crisis of masculinity in the West. Social changes related to rising male unemployment, female emancipation and transformation of the labor market undermined the position of man as the breadwinner; and consequently led to a gradual dismantling of the patriarchal organization of society (MacInnes, J. (1998). The end of masculinity. Buckingham: Open University Press, p. 55). This research is a qualitative study based on in-depth interviews with a sample of nine Bahraini men aged 20–40 and aims at analyzing the subjective experience of masculinity based on the case study of the Kingdom of Bahrain. A literature overview of the subject is followed by data analysis. Its specific cultural context presents a hegemonic masculinity deeply rooted in the organization of society and supported by religion. Nonetheless, rapid modernization of the region has prompted social, economic and cultural changes. Their impact on the male psyche has not been studied yet. As a matter of fact, research on how masculinity is experienced in the Arabian Peninsula is virtually inexistent. Studies devoted to the subject of masculinity deal primarily with the transformation of female and male roles in society (Elamin & Omair. Personnel Review, 39(6), 747–766, 2010; Schlaffer, E., & Kropiunigg, U. (2011). Saudi youth: Unveiling the force for change. Gulf analysis paper). Even from this perspective, Bahrain has never been studied. Our research is thus a pioneer work since it focuses on the psychological aspects of the construction and experience of masculinity and it deals with the subject of Bahrain.

Keywords: normative ideal, hegemonic masculinity, masculine ideal, feminine trait, luxury brand

Topics: Economies, Gender, Men, Masculinity/ies, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Religion Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Bahrain

Year: 2014

Modernising Women and Democratisation After the Arab Spring


Moghadam, Valentine M. 2014. "Modernising Women and Democratisation After the Arab Spring." The Journal of North African Studies 19 (2): 137-42

Author: Valentine M. Moghadam


What has the Arab Spring meant to women, and women's rights, in the region? Three years after the mass social protests of January and February 2011, when and where can we expect the promises of democracy and equality, and the revolutionary spirit of unity and purpose, to be realised? This Foreword offers a stock-taking of events and possible future directions, with a focus on prospects for a women-friendly democratisation.

Keywords: Arab Spring, democratisation, women, women's rights, women's movements

Topics: Armed Conflict, Democracy / Democratization, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Governance, Post-Conflict Governance, Post-Conflict, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, MENA, North Africa, Asia, Middle East Countries: Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Morocco, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen

Year: 2014

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