Married women in Lebanon who suffer abuse at home remain at the mercy of the country’s multitude of religious courts, because the hard-fought civil law against domestic violence has been stalled for a vote in parliament since the summer. One woman demanding a divorce and custody rights is Aisha, a 24-year-old mother of four originally from the Bekaa Valley, whose abusive husband forced her into prostitution.
“The feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women,” Pat Robertson, founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network and former Baptist minister once said.“It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism, and become lesbians.”
Unfortunately, Robertson is not alone in his negative view of feminism. The word “feminist,” which used to be associated with the bravery of the suffrage movement, these days seems to appear more often used as a pejorative than a positive term.
The passage is from the newly launched book “De Femme à Homme,” (From Woman to Man) by Lebanese sculptor, writer and businesswoman Nadine Abou Zaki. The author has worked with women for the past 10 years, both as the editor-in-chief of Al-Hasnaa, a monthly Arabic women’s magazine established in 1909, and as the founder of the Arab Women’s Forum. The book is her third and deals with gender issues and what it means to be a woman in the 21st century.Read more at dailystar.com
A workshop Thursday brought together young women leaders from Lebanon and the region to discuss the importance of gender equality in the Arab world. Arab International Women’s Forum held the conference in partnership with PwC and the Institute of Women’s Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University.Read more at dailystar.com