Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Middle Eastern Women between Oppression and Resistance: Case Studies of Iraqi, Palestinian and Kurdish Women of Turkey

Citation:

Khodary, Yasmin, Noha Salah, and Nada Mohsen. 2020. "Middle Eastern Women between Oppression and Resistance: Case Studies of Iraqi, Palestinian and Kurdish Women of Turkey." Journal of International Women's Studies 21 (1): 204-26.

Authors: Yasmin Khodary, Noha Salah, Nada Mohsen

Abstract:

Wars and conflicts have had a profound impact on women and gender in the Middle East. In this article, we aim to highlight the various ways in which the ongoing oppression and conflict in the Middle East shape the responses of the Iraqi, Palestinian and Kurdish women of Turkey and the object of their struggles. We go beyond the 'Orientalist' discourse, which depicts Middle Eastern women in armed conflicts as solely vulnerable and helpless victims, to discuss the resisting roles played by the Iraqi, Palestinian and Kurdish women of Turkey. Middle Eastern women have played and continue to play major roles in responding to society, gender and state oppression. While the Iraqi women in this study voice their resistance through conventional actions and wide civil-society activism that transcends the local level, the Palestinian women engage in unconventional unarmed or peaceful resistance through Sumud and cultural resistance as well as armed/non-peaceful acts of resistance. Finally, in the face of Turkish state oppression, the Kurdish women of Turkey also deploy non-peaceful resistance through becoming active fighters and engaging leadership positions in the Kurdistan Workers' Party.

Keywords: Iraqi women, Palestinian women, Kurdish women, resilience, resistance, oppression

Topics: Armed Conflict, Civil Society, Combatants, Female Combatants, Conflict, Gender, Women Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories, Turkey

Year: 2020

Rethinking Homonationalism

Citation:

Puar, Jasbir. 2013. "Rethinking Homonationalism." International Journal of Middle East Studies 45 (2): 336-39. 

Author: Jasbir Puar

Annotation:

"In my 2007 monograph Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times (hereafter TA), I develop the conceptual frame of "homonationalism" for understanding the complexities of how "acceptance" and "tolerance" for gay and lesbian subjects have become a barometer by which the right to and capacity for national sovereignty is evaluated. I had become increasingly frustrated with the standard refrain of transnational feminist discourse as well as queer theories that unequivocally stated, quite vociferously throughout the 1990s, that the nation is heteronormative and that the queer is inherently an outlaw to the nation-state. While the discourse of American exceptionalism has always served a vital role in U.S. nation-state formation, TA examines how sexuality has become a crucial formation in the articulation of proper U.S. citizens across other registers like gender, class, and race, both nationally and transnationally. In this sense, homonationalism is an analytic category deployed to understand and historicize how and why a nation's status as "gay-friendly" has become desirable in the first place. Like modernity, homonationalism can be resisted and re-signified, but not opted out of: we are all conditioned by it and through it." (Puar 2013, 336)

 

Topics: Citizenship, Class, Feminisms, Gender, LGBTQ, Nationalism, Race Regions: Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2013

Roof Knocking

"In war-stricken Palestine, a woman prepares a meal to break the fast in the month of Ramadan. A phone call by an Israeli soldier alerts her of the bombing of her building in ten minutes. Coming to accept her family’s fate is the only way she can make a stand for her life, with grim consequences."

Source: https://www.roofknockingshortfilm.com/

Right-Wing Sisterhood: Everyday Politics of Hindu Nationalist Women in India and Zionist Settler Women in Israel-Palestine

Citation:

Mehta, Akanksha. 2017. "Right-Wing Sisterhood: Everyday Politics of Hindu Nationalist Women in India and Zionist Settler Women in Israel-Palestine." PhD diss., SOAS University of London.

Author: Akanksha Mehta

Annotation:

Summary: 
"Right-Wing movements have gained political momentum in the last few decades, drawing within their ranks women who not only embody their exclusionary and violent politics but who also simultaneously contest everyday patriarchies. This thesis examines the everyday politics of women in two right-wing movements, the cultural nationalist Hindu right-wing project in India and the settler-colonial Zionist project in Israel-Palestine. Based on fourteen months of ethnographic, narrative, and visual ‘fieldwork’ conducted with women in both these movements, I argue that through a politics of the everyday, right-wing women bargain and negotiate with patriarchal communities/homes, male-formulated ideologies and discourses, and maledominated right-wing projects and spaces. These mediations replicate and affirm as well as subvert and challenge patriarchal structures and power hierarchies, troubling the binaries of home/world, private/public, personal/political, and victim/agent. I assert that dominant literature on rightwing women focuses on motherhood and family, ignoring various other crucial subject positions that are constituted and occupied by right-wing women and neglecting the agential and empowering potential of right-wing women’s subjectivities.
 
"I use four themes/lenses to examine the everyday politics of right-wing women. These are: pedagogy and education; charity and humanitarian work; intimacy, friendship, sociability and leisure; and political violence. By interrogating the practices that are contained in and enabled by these four locations of Hindu right-wing and Zionist settler women’s everyday politics, this thesis highlights the multiple narratives, contradictions, pluralities, hierarchies, power structures, languages, and discourses that encompass right-wing women’s projects" (Mehta 2017, 3-4). 

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Nationalism, Political Participation, Religion, Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East, Southeast Asia Countries: India, Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2017

Naila and the Uprising

When a nation-wide uprising breaks out in 1987, a woman in Gaza must make a choice between love, family, and freedom. Undaunted, she embraces all three, joining a clandestine network of women in a movement that forces the world to recognize the Palestinian right to self-determination for the first time.

Fertile Memory (Al Dhakira al Khasba)

"The first full length film to be shot within the disputed Palestinian West Bank "Green Line," Fertile Memory is the feature debut of Michel Khleifi, acclaimed director of the Cannes Film Festival triumph, Wedding in Galilee. Lyrically blending both documentary and narrative elements, Khleifi skillfully and lovingly crafts a portrait of two Palestinian women whose individual struggles both define and transcend the politics that have torn apart their homes and their lives.

Gender and Settler Colonialism in Palestinian Agriculture: Structural Transformations

Citation:

Awwad, Nida Abu. 2016. “Gender and Settler Colonialism in Palestinian Agriculture: Structural Transformations.” Arab Studies Quarterly 38 (3): 540–61.

Author: Nida Abu Awwad

Abstract:

The gendered nature of the agricultural sector is significantly influenced by the political and socio-economic and cultural structure of any society. The division of labor between males and females within the family farm is seriously affected as a response to economic pressures along with the impact of other restrictions imposed by predetermined gender roles. In the Palestinian context, economic pressures were created mainly by the structural transformation in Palestinian agriculture following the Zionist settler colonization of Palestine, along with other minor factors related to the Palestinian neo-liberal economic policies dictated by the international financial institution and Zionist interests. This article argues that the gendered nature of the Palestinian agriculture sector has been transformed and has promoted women’s exploitation as follows: First, restructure of the agricultural employment by the decline of both women’s and men’s employment of the total Palestinian labor force within serious exploitive and fluctuating conditions; second, changes in tasks and division of labor, women’s property rights for agricultural land resources and services provided by the Palestinian Authority; and finally increasing women’s burden by increasing their time allocation for agricultural tasks. The data presented in the article are based on a comprehensive analysis of secondary information on Palestinian agriculture, and primary data collected in 2010 with the help of a few households case studies (life history) from two locations in the central region of the West Bank.

Keywords: gender, settler colonialism, structural transformation, West Bank, Gaza Strip, Zionist settlements, Palestinian agriculture, women's contribution, palestine

Topics: Agriculture, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Economies, Economic Inequality, Gender, Gender Roles, International Financial Institutions, Rights, Property Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2016

Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding: Illuminating the Unseen

Citation:

Marshall, Katherine, and Susan Hayward, eds. 2015. Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding: Illuminating the Unseen. Washington, DC: United States Institute of Peace Press.

Authors: Katherine Marshall, Susan Hayward

Abstract:

Many women working for peace around the world are motivated by their religious beliefs, whether they work within secular or religious organizations. These women often find themselves sidelined or excluded from mainstream peacebuilding efforts. Secular organizations can be uncomfortable working with religious groups. Meanwhile, religious institutions often dissuade or even disallow women from leadership positions. Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding: Illuminating the Unseen shows how women determined to work for peace have faced these obstacles in ingenious ways—suggesting, by example, ways that religious and secular organizations might better include them in larger peacebuilding campaigns and make those campaigns more effective in ending conflict.
 
The first part of the book examines the particular dynamics of women of faith working toward peace within Catholicism, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism. The second part contains case studies of women peacebuilders in Africa, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia, detailing how their faiths have informed their work, what roles religious institutions have played as they have moved forward, what accomplishments have resulted from their efforts, and what challenges remain. An appendix of interviews offers further perspectives from peacebuilders, both women and men.
 
Ultimately, Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding is a call to change the paradigm of peacebuilding inside and outside of the world’s faiths, to strengthen women’s abilities to work for peace and, in turn, improve the chances that major efforts to end conflicts around the world succeed. (United States Institute of Peace)
 

Annotation:

Table of Contents:

1. Religious Women’s Invisibility: Obstacles and opportunities
Susan Hayward and Katherine Marshall

2. Part I: Women Peacebuilders: Distinctive Approaches of Different Religious Traditions
Susan Hayward and Katherine Marshall

3. Catholic Women Building Peace: Invisibility, Ideas and Institutions Expand Ideas
Maryann Casimano Love

4. Muslim Women’s Peacebuilding Initiatives
S. Ayse Kadayifci-Orellana

5. Creating Peaceful and Sustainable Communities through the Spiritual Empowerment of Buddhism and Hinduism
Dena Merriam

6. Jewish Women in Peacebuilding: Embracing Disagreement in the Pursuit of “Shalom”
Lucy Kurtzer-Ellenbogen

7. Part II Women and Faith in Action: Regional Case Studies
Susan Hayward and Katherine Marshall

8. An All-Women Peacekeeping Group: Lessons From the Mindanao People’s Caucus
Margaret Jenkins

9. Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding in Kaduna State, Nigeria
Bilkisu Yusuf and Sr. Kathleen McGarvey

10. The Politics of Resistance: Muslim Women Negotiating Peace in Aceh, Indonesia
Etin Anwar

11. Women Reborn: A Case Study of the Intersection of Women, Religion, and Peacebuilding in a Palestinian Village in Israel
Andrea K. Blanch, with coauthors Esther Hertzog and Ibtisam Mahameed

12. Women Citizens and Believers as Agents of Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Zilka Spahic Šiljak

13. Women Peacebuilders in Post-Coup Honduras: Their Spiritual Struggle to Transform Multiple Forms of Violence
Mónica A. Maher

14. Women, Religion and Trauma Healing: A Case in India
Anjana Dayal Prewitt

15. Strengthening Religious Women’s Work for Peace
Jacqueline Ogega and Katherine Marshall

16. Conclusion: Seeking Common Ground
Susan Hayward and Katherine Marshall

17. Appendix: Scholars and Practitioners Engaged with Women, Religion, and Peace

Topics: Armed Conflict, Gender, Women, Peacebuilding, Peacekeeping, Peace Processes, Religion Regions: Africa, MENA, West Africa, Americas, Central America, Asia, Middle East, Southeast Asia, Europe, Balkans, Eastern Europe Countries: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Israel, Nigeria, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories, Philippines

Year: 2015

The "Double-Battle": Women Combatants and Their Embodied Experiences in War Zone

Citation:

Harel-Shalev, Ayelet, and Shir Daphna-Tekoah. 2016. “The "Double-Battle": Women Combatants and Their Embodied Experiences in War Zones.” Critical Studies on Terrorism 9 (2): 312–33. doi:10.1080/17539153.2016.1178484.
 

Authors: Ayelet Harel-Shalev, Shir Daphna-Tekoah

Abstract:

This study contributes to the ongoing debate about women in combat by exploring women combatants’ experiences of war through interviews with women soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces who served as combatants or in combat-support roles in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. The authors proffer that the bodily experiences of women combatants disturb conventional international relations and hegemonic masculine war metanarratives that either abstract or glorify combat. These otherwise silenced narratives reveal juxtapositions of feelings of competence and vulnerability and shed light on the women’s struggle for gender integration in the military. The authors conclude the article with a reflection on the challenges facing researchers investigating war and terrorism.

Topics: Armed Conflict, Combatants, Female Combatants, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Militaries Regions: Asia, Middle East Countries: Israel, Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2016

Between Complicity and Subversion: Body Politics in Palestinian National Narrative

Citation:

Amireh, Amal. 2003. “Between Complicity and Subversion: Body Politics in Palestinian National Narrative.” The South Atlantic Quarterly 102 (4): 747-72.

Author: Amal Amireh

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

Year: 2003

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