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Women

The Pains of the Sea

"Syrian and Iraqi immigrants are trying to cross the sea to reach Turkey. A mother must choose between the life of her child and her own life in the sea."

Source: http://www.splitfilmfestival.hr/the-pains-of-the-sea-mohammad-reza-masoudi/

The Flight of the Swallow

"Due to the extreme situation in her country, a woman decides to cross the border on foot in search of a better life. The journey leads to devastating consequences that will change her life forever."

Source: https://films.sff.ba/en/detail/?film=The-Flight-of-the-Swallow

Tangle

"A glimpse into the life of a girl during wartime."

Source: https://www.siff.net/festival/tangle

Secularism, Gender and the State in the Middle East: The Egyptian Women’s Movement

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje. 2000. Secularism, Gender and the State in the Middle East: The Egyptian Women’s Movement. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Author: Nadje Al-Ali

Annotation:

Summary:
A considerable literature has been devoted to the study of Islamic activism. By contrast, Nadje Al-Ali's book explores the anthropological and political significance of secular-oriented activism by focusing on the women's movement in Egypt. In so doing, it challenges stereotypical images of Arab women as passive victims and demonstrates how they fight for their rights and confront conservative forces. Al-Ali's book also takes issue with prevailing constructions of 'the West' and its perceived dichotomous relation to 'the East'. The argument is constructed around interviews which afford fascinating insights into the history of the women's movement in Egypt, notions about secularism and how Islamist constituencies have impacted on women's activism generally. The balance between the empirical and conceptual material is adeptly handled. The author frames her work in the context of current theoretical debates in Middle Eastern and post-colonial scholarship: while some of the ideas are complex, her lucid style means they are always comprehensible; the book will therefore appeal to students, as well as to scholars in the field. (Summary from Cambridge University Press)


Table of Contents:
Introduction

1. Up Against Conceptual Frameworks: Post-Orientalism, Occidentalism and Presentations of the Self

2. Contextualizing the Egyptian Women's Movement

3. Self and Generation: Formative Experiences of Egyptian Women Activists

4. Secularism: Challenging Neo-Orientalism and ‘His-Stories’

5. From Words to Deeds: Priorities and Projects of Contemporary Activists

6. A Mirror of Political Culture in Egypt: Divisions and Debates among Women Activists

Conclusion: ‘Standing on Shifting Ground’

Topics: Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Gender, Women, Political Participation, Religion, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: Africa, MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Egypt

Year: 2000

Iraqi Women: Untold Stories from 1948 to the Present

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje Sadiq. 2007. Iraqi Women: Untold Stories from 1948 to the Present. London: Zed Books.

Author: Nadje Sadiq Al-Ali

Annotation:

Summary:
The war in Iraq has put the condition of Iraqi women firmly on the global agenda. For years, their lives have been framed by state oppression, economic sanctions and three wars. Now they must play a seminal role in reshaping their country's future for the twenty-first century.

Nadje Al-Ali challenges the myths and misconceptions which have dominated debates about Iraqi women, bringing a much needed gender perspective to bear on the central political issue of our time. Based on life stories and oral histories of Iraqi women, she traces the history of Iraq from post-colonial independence, to the emergence of a women's movement in the 1950s, Saddam Hussein's early policy of state feminism to the turn towards greater social conservatism triggered by war and sanctions. Yet, the book also shows that, far from being passive victims, Iraqi women have been, and continue to be, key social and political actors. Following the invasion, Al-Ali analyses the impact of occupation and Islamist movements on women's lives and argues that US-led calls for liberation has led to a greater backlash against Iraqi women. (Summary from ZED Books)

Table of Contents:
Introduction

1. Living in the Diaspora

2. Living with the Revolution

3. Living with the Ba'th

4. Living with Wars on Many Fronts

5. Living with War and Sanctions

6. Living with the Occupation

Conclusion

Topics: Armed Conflict, Occupation, Coloniality/Post-Coloniality, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gender Analysis, Nationalism, Political Participation, Religion Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2007

Clashes, Collaborations and Convergences: Evolving Relations of Turkish and Kurdish Women’s Rights Activists

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje, and Latif Taṣ. 2019. "Clashes, Collaborations and Convergences: Evolving Relations of Turkish and Kurdish Women’s Rights Activists." Journal of Balkan and Near Eastern Studies 21 (3): 304-18.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Taṣ

Abstract:

This article discusses the various ways the Kurdish women’s movement has impacted feminism in the Turkish context. Against the background of the problematic historical relationship between Turkish and Kurdish women’s rights activists, the article explores the shift in perceptions of, attitudes towards and relations of feminists in Turkey with the Kurdish women’s movement. The article shows that a ‘new generation of feminists’ in Turkey appreciates and is inspired by the Kurdish women’s movement, and rejects the Kemalist and nationalist undertones of earlier generations. Without wanting to belittle on-going nationalism and the rise of women’s cadres linked to the authoritarian Turkish regime, the article analyses the various ways the intersectional long-term struggle of Kurdish women is being perceived, recognized and critically engaged with by many Turkish feminist activists.

Topics: Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Women's Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2019

Sexual Violence in Iraq: Challenges for Transnational Feminist Politics

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje. 2018. "Sexual Violence in Iraq: Challenges for Transnational Feminist Politics." European Journal of Women's Studies 25 (1): 10-27.

Author: Nadje Al-Ali

Abstract:

The article discusses sexual violence by ISIS against women in Iraq, particularly Yezidi women, against the historical background of broader sexual and gender-based violence. It intervenes in feminist debates about how to approach and analyse sexual and wider gender-based violence in Iraq specifically and the Middle East more generally. Recognizing the significance of positionality, the article argues against dichotomous positions and for the need to look at both macrostructural configurations of power pertaining to imperialism, neoliberalism and globalization on the one hand, and localized expressions of patriarchy, religious interpretations and practices and cultural norms on the other hand. Finally, the article reflects on the question of what a transnational feminist solidarity might look like in relation to sexual violence by ISIS.

Keywords: gender-based violence, ISIS, Kurdish Region of Iraq, positionality, Yezidi Women

Topics: Gender, Women, Gender-Based Violence, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Globalization, Military Forces & Armed Groups, Non-state Armed Groups, Religion, Sexual Violence Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2018

Reconsidering Nationalism and Feminism: The Kurdish Political Movement in Turkey

Citation:

Al‐Ali, Nadje, and Latif Tas. 2018. "Reconsidering Nationalism and Feminism: The Kurdish Political Movement in Turkey." Nations and Nationalism 24 (2): 453-73.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Tas

Abstract:

Feminist scholars have documented with reference to multiple empirical contexts that feminist claims within nationalist movements are often side‐lined, constructed as ‘inauthentic’ and frequently discredited for imitating supposedly western notions of gender‐based equality. Despite these historical precedents, some feminist scholars have pointed to the positive aspects of nationalist movements, which frequently open up spaces for gender‐based claims. Our research is based on the recognition that we cannot discuss and evaluate the fraught relationship in the abstract but that we need to look at the specific historical and empirical contexts and articulations of nationalism and feminism. The specific case study we draw from is the relationship between the Kurdish women's movement and the wider Kurdish political movement in Turkey. We are exploring the ways that the Kurdish movement in Turkey has politicised Kurdish women's rights activists and examine how Kurdish women activists have reacted to patriarchal tendencies within the Kurdish movement.

Keywords: ethnic nationalism, feminism, Kurdish women's movement, middle east, PKK, Turkey

Topics: Ethnicity, Feminisms, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Patriarchy, Gender Equality/Inequality, Nationalism, Political Participation, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2018

“War Is like a Blanket”: Feminist Convergences in Kurdish and Turkish Women’s Rights Activism for Peace

Citation:

Al-Ali, Nadje, and Latif Tas. 2017. "'War Is like a Blanket': Feminist Convergences in Kurdish and Turkish Women’s Rights Activism for Peace." Journal of Middle East Women's Studies 13 (3): 354-75.

Authors: Nadje Al-Ali, Latif Tas

Abstract:

Despite the recent outbreak of violence and conflict, peace continues to be high on the agenda of the Kurdish political movement and many progressive Turkish intellectuals and activists. Based on qualitative research we conducted in Diyarbakır, Istanbul, London, and Berlin in 2015–16, we show that Kurdish activists have struggled to make the eradication of gender-based inequalities and violence central to the wider Kurdish peace movement, while Turkish women’s rights activists have increasingly recognized that the war against the Kurds, “like a blanket,” often papers over gender injustices. Both Kurdish and Turkish activists stress the necessity of understanding that a just and sustainable peace must include gender equality and that gender justice cannot be achieved in times of war. Thus feminist convergences in Kurdish and Turkish activism present peace and women’s rights as inseparable and generate the potential to challenge nationalist state power and the militarization of society.

Keywords: peace, Turkish Kurdish conflict, Kurdish political movement, women's rights movement, Turkey

Topics: Armed Conflict, Ethnicity, Gender, Women, Gendered Power Relations, Gender Equality/Inequality, Justice, Nationalism, Peacebuilding, Post-Conflict Regions: MENA, Asia, Europe, Southern Europe Countries: Turkey

Year: 2017

Economies of Violence: Transnational Feminism, Postsocialism, and the Politics of Sex Trafficking

Citation:

Suchland, Jennifer. 2015. Economies of Violence: Transnational Feminism, Postsocialism, and the Politics of Sex Trafficking. Durham: Duke University Press.

Author: Jennifer Suchland

Annotation:

Summary:
Recent human rights campaigns against sex trafficking have focused on individual victims, treating trafficking as a criminal aberration in an otherwise just economic order. In Economies of Violence Jennifer Suchland directly critiques these explanations and approaches, as they obscure the reality that trafficking is symptomatic of complex economic and social dynamics and the economies of violence that sustain them. Examining United Nations proceedings on women's rights issues, government and NGO anti-trafficking policies, and campaigns by feminist activists, Suchland contends that trafficking must be understood not solely as a criminal, gendered, and sexualized phenomenon, but as operating within global systems of precarious labor, neoliberalism, and the transition from socialist to capitalist economies in the former Soviet Union and Eastern Bloc. In shifting the focus away from individual victims, and by underscoring trafficking's economic and social causes, Suchland provides a foundation for building more robust methods for combatting human trafficking. (Summary from Duke University Press) 
 
Table of Contents: 
1. Sex Trafficking and the Making of a Feminist Subject of Analysis
 
2. The Natasha Trade and the Post-Cold War Reframing of Precarity
 
3. Second World/ Second Sex: Alternative Genealogies in Feminist Homogenous Empty Time
 
4. Lost in Transition: Postsocialist Trafficking and the Erasure of Systemic Violence
 
5. Freedom as Choice and the Neoliberal Economism of Trafficking Discourse
 
6. Conclusion: Antitrafficking Beyond the Carceral State

 

Topics: Economies, Feminisms, Feminist Political Economy, Gender, Women, International Organizations, NGOs, Political Economies, Rights, Human Rights, Women's Rights, Trafficking, Sex Trafficking

Year: 2015

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