Documenting Egypt’s Revolution: Al-Midan (The Square) Reviewed

Jehane Noujaim’s recent film, Al-Midan (translation: The Square), follows a group of Egyptian activists—many who are filmmakers and photographers themselves— involved in their nation’s ever-changing revolution(s) over the past couple of years. The film is beautifully shot, as Noujaim both follows the activists’ lives and has them describe their hopes for freedom and change as they move in and out of Tahrir Square. The film, which was picked up for release by Netflix, has been nominated in the “be … [Read more...]

Stop Using Us: Women’s Votes in the Egyptian Presidential Elections

During the Egyptian elections campaigning, women were, of course, targeted by those looking for votes.Akher Kalam – “Final Words” – is one of the most viewed TV talk shows in Egypt.  As with most Egyptian media outlets lately, it has been paying much attention to the elections, and its coverage of women’s issues in the Egyptian elections is typical of how many other media outlets were talking about these topics. That show had earlier had an episode with Christian guests, to focus on issues of … [Read more...]

In the Name of the Caliphate: What the “Islamic State” Seems to Mean for Muslim Women

If you ever wondered about “Islamization” and the so-called return to the Caliphate, recent debates arising from a number of Muslim countries regarding the “Islamization” and the status of Muslim women bring important questions to the table. First of all, it raises the question of what really is the “Islamic state” and what describes it. Most of us have heard about “ideal” visions of Islamic statehood (here, here and here). Yet, I would dare to say that we have seen none in modern times.Nonet … [Read more...]

Marching with Dignity – “Sisters” or Not

Just a month ago, here on MMW, I tried to highlight the fact that mainstream media was focusing on Islamists’ statements regarding what women wear, while, in fact, what was even more dangerous was their vision regarding women and child law. I referred in that article to quotations from Dr. Manal Abul-Hassan about allowing female genital mutilation, and to Abul-Hassan’s description of child protection laws as simply an imitation of the West (and therefore bad or unnecessary).Turns that Dr. … [Read more...]

What Women Wear: Women’s Clothing, Media, and Egypt’s Revolutionary Elections

Women in the Egyptian revolution have been a great source of international attention and appreciation. It is when women participate that you truly can call it a “people’s” revolution. When the news started to come out about the elections for the Revolutionary Parliament, everyone looked closely for women’s participation; women candidates, women voters, women section in each party program, and women finally winning seats in the parliament. With the general fear from the dominance of the so-call … [Read more...]