This study focuses on the areas permanently under Kurdish control with regime presence. These areas have experienced a quite different trajectory because they have been least affected by military fighting. While the human losses and damage suffered at the hands of ISIS should not be belittled, this area has hardly experienced aerial bombardments or fighting on the ground. Kurdish actors, for a long time tightly controlled by the Syrian regime, have been able to develop governance structures in parallel to the ones set up by the regime. While none of the Kurdish parties has openly called for independence understood as separation from Syria, Kurdish actors have come up with governance structures that explore the possibilities of autonomy within a federal state. They have come up with a constitution and an institutional design, and as far as it is in the range of their possibilities, they have been working on implementing it.
Looking at Aliaa Elmahdy’s act of protest through posting naked photos of herself on her blog, this paper studies the debates that followed. By examining articles that were written about Femen, nudity, Muslim women, and body politics, this Paper shows that the debates ran the risk of stabilizing feminism within static dogmatic beliefs.
During the Arab uprisings, an unprecedented number of women took to the streets, paving the way for a more important role in politics. However, in the transitional period that follows, they now have to fight against their exclusion from the political arena.
The Open Society Foundations’ Senior Program Officer on Women’s Rights in the Arab regional office in Amman in an interview on the role of women in the arab revolutions, their issues and needs, their ability to position themselves in the decision-making process, their main concerns and about fears and the role of islamists.