Egyptian women take to the streets!

Egyptian women take to the streets!
by Azadeh Azad

Tens of thousands of Egyptian women have been taking to the streets to demand change. They constitute a substantial part of Egyptian anti-government protests. Ghada Shahbandar, an activist with the Egyptian Organization for Human Rights, estimated the crowd downtown to be 20 percent female. Other estimates were as high as 50 percent. In past protests, the female presence would rarely rise to 10 percent.

Hopefully this uprising won't lead to an Islamist State! >>> Photo essay from various sources


more from Azadeh Azad
Azadeh Azad

Thanks, Sheila & vildemose

by Azadeh Azad on


Fear losing rights gained during ousted secular

by vildemose on



Tunisian women are watching warily should the popular revolt that ousted the authoritarian president also unravel women’s rights bolstered by his secular regime in this predominantly Muslim country. “I’m scared of the return of the Islamists,” said Sonia, a 35-year-old government official who declined to give her last name, as the long-banned Islamist movement Ennahdha prepares to enter the newly-freed political scene. They’ll impose a new culture that is totally alien to us like the fundamentalist dress code Sonia, a 35-year-old government official “They’ll impose a new culture that is totally alien to us like the fundamentalist dress code,” said Sonia, referring to the Muslim headscarf worn by some but by no means all women in the north African state.

It’s a fear backed by little substance so far — except for some talk on chat shows and warnings on Tunisian Facebook pages. Ennahdha, itself, has said it will respect the country’s laws. Yet Mabrouka, 29, a journalist who also did not give her last name, was watchful. “I saw a lot of bearded men today.

 I was really afraid. I don’t think the laws on women’s rights will change but the Islamists are going to be even more forceful than before.” ... //

Sheila K

female circumcision - Dr. Nawal El Saadawi

by Sheila K on

Though illegal, Egypt has the highest rate of female circumcision. One of the most admired people in my life is Dr. Nawal El Saadawi. She's Egyptian and perhaps one of the most intelligent, intellectual writers of our time. Though brought up in an educated family, she too was circumcised. She's been fighting this horrible abuse against women for years.  I find her books and lectures very inspiring. She's been lecturing Egyptian women for ages against female circumcision. What does that say about women there, in a collective sense?

I'd be very curious to hear her take about Egypt's uprising. She should be their future leader :) 

I am hoping a better future for the Egyptian women.

Azadeh Azad

Red Wine

by Azadeh Azad on

Thanks for your notes and links. I have met a good number of Berbers in Montreal and Paris who were very different from the stereotypical North-Africans, both physically and in terms of their outlooks on life. I also studied the Tuareg people for my thesis. In Tuareg society, which is largely matrilineal, women do not traditionally wear the veil, whereas men do. It is very fortunate that Egypt, like most societies, is not homogenous!



Red Wine


by Red Wine on


آزاده جان،مطلب جالبی‌ را بیان کرده اید ،یک چند مورد را یادآوری میشوم.

کشور مصر تنها به ۲-۳ شهر قاهره و اسکندریه و سوئز ختم نمی‌شود و زنان مصری به نسبت زنان دیگر شمال آفریقا از بسیاری از جهات بهتر هستند،تنها بستگی به این دارند که اهل کجا هستند،وابسته به چه قبیله‌ و یا منطقه هستند،چه نوع شریعت از اسلام را به مورد احترام میگذارند.

در مصر شهر نشینی.. بیسوادی بیداد می‌کند و فرهنگ اکثر خانواده‌ها سرچشمه از اسلام است و زن خواه ناخواه بر واجب الشرایط است که آن چیزی را حکم بداند که پدر گوید،شوهر گوید و در آخر قرآن ! اما اگر شما تشریف بیاورید به مناطقی دیگر از این کشور عجایب ها،قضیه تا به اندازه زیادی تغییر می‌کند (۹۰% این مناطقی که به خدمتتان عرض می‌کنم،قابل دیدن برای صنعت توریست نیست ! جای توریست اینجاها نیست،توریست را فقط دیدن احرام خوش آید و چکارش به دیگر سرزمینها و مملو از دانستنیها !).. در قبایلی صحرا نشین (تا به اطراف نیل مقدس و نزدیکیهای سر حدات سودان!) چو اثیوت، حنا (منطقه مورد علاقه بنده!) سوهاق و تا به دریای بیکران سرخ، بدوی‌ها و بربران شصلتی و صد البته کولیان کناره رود شمالی‌ نیل تا اسوان !

در این مناطق زنان اقتصاد خانواده را به تور کامل در اختیار دارند، پلیگامی را احترام نمیگذارند و مرد تنها حق یک زن دارد،در ۹۰% زندگی‌ خود بی‌ حجابند،پر رمز و فراوان اسرار قدیم را تنها به دختران گویند (منظور علم پزشکی‌ است که از زنان بزرگتر فرا میگیرند،سحر و جادو میکنند، شاعرند ،نوازنده اند،از بالا تنه عریان شبها میرقصند و بسیار خوشند) و...


این تنها مختص به مصر نیست،در ۳ دوره زنان مصری بسیار تغییر کرده‌اند،زمان تاریخی فرعونها ،زمان اسلام پذیری اینان،زمان استعمار اعراب و عثمانیها !

در کنار مساجد،کاباره‌های فراوانی در سطح شهر دیده میشود که بسیاری از زنان برای کمک خانواده مجبور به رقصیدن هستند،صبحا با حجابند و شب میرقصند و اشکالی از این نشنیدم ! تمامی این رقاص‌ها به مورد احترام زیادی قرار میگیرند.

قطعاً اگر سیاست کشور به دست اخوان المسلمین بیافتد،شاید وضعیت فرق کند.. خداوند عالم است.

از بلاگ شما متشکریم.


Azadeh Azad

Egyptian women

by Azadeh Azad on

Sheila:  JJ is going to publish here tens of photos of Egyptian women I have sent him. I did not have the impression that most of these women were veiled. There is a strong feminist movement in Egypt, but the Egyptian society, like most other Middle-Eastern societies, is ferociously patriarchal - with or without veiled women!

Optimistic, I am not!


Sheila K

most women (if even 20%) are covered up in Hejab

by Sheila K on

which is not a good news anyways. It says that they are prepared to accept an Islamic gov't. There are very little female protesters compared to Iran's revolution of late 70s and post election of the late 2000s. However even with women's influence in the revolution, women's basic rights were taken away and were systematically forced to abide by Hejab rules or else face severe consequences. 

I find it often appalling when our Iran analysts (Iranian men mostly)  never bring up the issue with women's deprivation of freedom in IRI for the past 30 decades and how that has affected them. 

Egypt is heading toward another Islamic gov't and there's no stopping it cause the people are condition to accept the rule of Allah! 



by yolanda on

This photo looks so similar to the photos from Iranian protests!

Thank you for sharing!