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What Kind of Liberation? Women and Iraq

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Top: Author: Nadje Al-Ali. Bottom: An Iraqi woman reads a leaflet given to her by an Iraqi policeman in Rysalah, Baghdad, Iraq.  Source:  Bottom photo: James Dale

Top: Author: Nadje Al-Ali. Bottom: An Iraqi woman reads a leaflet given to her by an Iraqi policeman in Rysalah, Baghdad, Iraq. Source: Bottom photo: James Dale

In the run-up to the war in Iraq, a lot of attention was given to the plight of Iraqi women. The constant drumbeat from the Bush administration was that U.S. interest in Iraq was liberation — with women’s rights as a top priority. What went largely unreported is that Iraqi women activists have been organizing – for the last 50 years. So what was life like for women before the invasion? And… what’s it like now? On this edition, we hear from author and activist, Nadje Al-Ali who talks about the reality of women’s lives in Iraq.

Featuring:

Nadje Al-Ali is the co-author of a new book entitled, “What Kind of Liberation? Women and the Occupation of Iraq.” She is also the director at the University of London, Department of Gender Studies Center at SOAS.

Executive Producer/Host: Tena Rubio
Producer: Andrew Stelzer
Executive Director: Lisa Rudman
Associate Director: Khanh Pham
Production Coordinator: Elena Botkin-Levy
Interns: Asma Mohseni and Patti Restaino

Special thanks to the Middle East Children’s Alliance, UC Press – and to Simin Yahaghi for producing this Women’s Desk program and to Preeti Sheekar for production assistance.

For more information:

What Kind of Liberation? Women and the Occupation of Iraq
By Nadje Al-Ali and Nicola Pratt
UC Press

Additional information:

Act Together: Women’s Action for Iraq – London

Dahr Jamail’s Mideast Dispatches

Independent Iraqi Woman Organization – Baghdad, Iraq

Middle East Children’s Alliance - Berkeley, CA

Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq (OFWI) – Baghdad, Iraq

Women Empowerment Organization – Erbil, Iraq

Women in Black – for Justice Against War

Related articles:

US Invasion of Iraq Set Women’s Rights Back 70 Years, by Nadje Al-Ali
The Huffington Post, January 27, 2009

Hidden victims of a brutal conflict: Iraq’s women, by Peter Beaumont
The Observer, October 8, 2006

An Empty Sort of Freedom by Houzan Mahmoud,
The Guardian March 8, 2004

Iraqi women find election a cruel joke, by Houzan Mahmoud
Seattlepi.com, January 30, 2005

Iraq must reject a constitution that enslaves women, by Houzan Mahmoud
The Independent, August 15, 2005

We Have Not been Liberated, by Haifa Zangana
The Guardian, March 6, 2007

Related Audio:

Short-Term Marriages Gain Popularity in Iraq, by Anne Garrels

Music:

Excerpt from Maqam Hwaizawi, by Safaafir
Horses, by Rahim AlHaj
Dervish Prayer Music by Maqams of Syria

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Author: Kwan

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