Book Review: “Normal Calm” by Hend Hegazi

Cover of Normal Calm. [Source].

According to statistics provided by RAINN, the United States-based Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network, “1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime.” The organization further notes that women who have experienced sexual assault are at higher risk for depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, and thoughts of suicide.Such important consequences of rape led American writer Hend Hegazi to tell the story of a rape survivor in her fir … [Read more...]

How Not to Discuss Sexual Violence against Third World Women

Source

Last week I was invited to the Dutch embassy to celebrate the launching of the Nobel Women’s Initiative’s report on sexual violence against women in Sudan. The report is titled “Survivors Speak Out: Sexual Violence in Sudan,” and it is meant to address the situation of “mass rape” and other forms of sexual violence against Sudanese women of all religious, ethnic and cultural backgrounds.As a Masters student interested in issues of gender and gendered violence, I was quite excited to be on … [Read more...]

On Sexual Violence and Media Portrayal in Pakistan

Years ago, loose gravel on a trail up Margalla Hills landed me in the emergency room with a sprained ankle.  All I remember at the time was the excruciating pain radiating from my ankle and worrying if it was broken and whether I'd be able catch a plane on time to return to university.  My mother and I were waiting for the doctor to finally see us when we heard a commotion in the main foyer.  A muffled siren could be heard just outside and medical personnel whizzed by us, yelling orders, but ev … [Read more...]

“Outlawed in Pakistan”: A Powerful Look at Violence Against Women

Scene from Outlawed in Pakistan. [Source].

FRONTLINE is one of my favorite shows to watch on television. Their documentaries are thoughtful and available to watch indefinitely online in the United States. In addition to airing documentaries, they have a fantastic online presence and provide additional commentary, interviews, and chats for each of their shows to further engage with viewers. I watched The Interrupters in 2012 for Muslimah Media Watch, when it aired under FRONTLINE in the United States. You can still watch that film … [Read more...]

Jamaat-i-Islami in Pakistan and the rape/adultery fallacy

This post was written by Aziz Poonawalla and originally appeared at City of Brass.I found this argument by Munawar Hassan of the political party Jamaat-i-Islami to be unbelievably disgusting and fundamentally blasphemous in the way he invokes the Qur’an to justify blatant misogyny:Here is the most disturbing part of Hassan’s comments: Anchor: The fundamental purpose of the women protection act was (is) to provide women with the right to file cases on the basis of circumstantial and for … [Read more...]

The New York Post’s DSK Victim-Blaming

Here's today's front page of The New York Post, victim-blaming Dominique Strauss-Kahn's accuser. You can email your concerned, disgusted reactions to letters@nypost.com.Thanks to the Women's Media Center for the tip. … [Read more...]

The DSK Rape Victim is Everything but a Victim, According to the Media

The media response to the Dominique Strauss-Kahn rape charges is predictably horrific. The salacious gossip can maintain itself for weeks: the victim lives in a complex for HIV-positive residents (no wait! She doesn’t); wears hijab; and is “pious and respectable.” No, you say, she’s not unattractive—she’s actually got great breasts?A full 57% of French citizens claim that Strauss-Kahn, who was set to unseat Sarkozy in the upcoming election, was set-up at his Sofitel Hotel. This, of course, is p … [Read more...]


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