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Lecture: Women In and After the Arab Uprisings

12 June 2012
Amsterdam, Spui 25

In 2012, for the Third Sadighi Annual Lecture, Dr Laleh Khalili of the University of London is invited. The title of Dr Khalili’s lecture is: Women In and After the Arab Uprisings.

The Sadighi Research Fund is an academic, non-profit organization founded with the mission and objective of promoting and supporting research and scholarship on contemporary Iranian history, culture and civilization. Initial funding for the Sadighi Research Fund was provided by the Centre for Iranian Documentation and Research and the International Institute for Social History.

The Annual Lectures constitute one of the key pillars of Sadighi Research Fund’s objectives. Each year an eminent scholar is invited to present a lecture related to social sciences on topics of her/his respective expertise.
More about the Sadighi Research Fund and lectures.


Abstract of the lecture Women In and After the Arab Uprisings:
"In all moments of crisis –wars, uprisings, and revolutions– women’s bodies becomes a primary terrain of contestation both during and after the crisis. Contestation over women’s physical appearances, their embodied presence, their voices all become central to imagining futures, challenging pasts, and shaping social and political relations. The Arab uprisings have been no different. Women have been crucially, vociferously, and visibly present in the spaces of struggle and contestation –in Tahrir and Pearl and Change squares of Cairo and Manama and San’a and elsewhere in the Arab world, in the strikes and protests, online and in the streets. Yet, even before the outcome of the uprisings are settled, their bodies, their rights, and their very political presence become the pivot of contention and controversy, with conservative social forces (in and out of the government, sometimes even in progressive or leftist garb) challenging their right to be there.
What I hope to do in this talk is to think through this contradictory process and situate it in broader historical contexts of past revolutions and crises. I want to ask how do women negotiate their right to “be there” -as women- against both the conservative social forces who deny their presence and the more universalist and general demands for social justice that may subsume their demands specifically as women."

Laleh Khalili is a senior lecturer in Middle East Politics at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London and the author of Heroes and Martyrs of Palestine: The Politics of National Commemoration (Cambridge 2007) and Time in the Shadows: Confinement in Counterinsurgencies (Stanford 2012 forthcoming) and the editor of Politics of the Modern Arab World (Routledge 2008) and (with Jillian Schwedler) Policing and Prisons in the Middle East: Formations of Coercion (Hurst/Columbia 2010).


Admission is free. You can make a reservation on the website of debating center Spui 25.