Refusing the Backseat: Women as Drivers of the Arab Uprisings in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen
Many observers assert that women played a front-line role in the Arab uprisings; however, such a claim has yet to be substantiated. This paper examines the role of women in the Arab protests and determines the extent to which they drove the uprisings of Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen. Through a comparative and qualitative analysis, this project relies heavily on social media research. Each case study includes an assessment of the pre-uprising societal status of women and their political participation, followed by an analysis of their activism throughout the uprisings. Ultimately, the paper argues that women performed with vigorous determination in various leadership positions which helped determine the outcome of the protests; they acted as protest leaders, organizers, citizen journalists, social media activists as well as political analysts and commentators. In fact, Egypt and Yemen’s protests were sparked by women and all three uprisings were spearheaded by women. This research is highly relevant as no works comparing women’s activism during the protests in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen have been produced. Despite being widely recognized as a crucial frame of analysis for the region’s politics, gender studies in the post-Arab uprising context is a developing field to which this project will contribute.
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Mousa, Sarah (Georgetown University, 2014)Since the toppling of Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, a one-dimensional narrative of the Arab Uprisings has become axiomatic in both foreign and Arab spheres. The mainstream narrative paints the movement as one ...