Palestinian Women, Violence, and the Peace Process


Holt, Maria. 2003. “Palestinian Women, Violence, and the Peace Process.” Development in Practice 13 (2-3): 223-38.

Author: Maria Holt


Much has been written about the contribution of Palestinian women to their nation's liberation struggle. They have not only survived in an atmosphere of remorseless violence, but have also made remarkable strides in terms of their rights and development as women. A question that has been less explored is the long-term impact of violence against women, whether in terms of their physical and psychological well-being or of their ability to participate in a meaningful way either in the conflict itself or in the post-conflict situation. This paper argues that, although Palestinian women are not simply victims but also agents of violence, such violence–whether random or institutionalised, perpetrated by the enemy or by their own people–places significant constraints on their ability to participate in the national liberation struggle. Consequently, they are inadequately prepared to contribute towards the peace process and, therefore, are prevented from realising their full potential in the new state.

Topics: Armed Conflict, National Liberation Wars, Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Peace Processes Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Palestine / Occupied Palestinian Territories

Year: 2003

© 2023 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at