2 verk 192 medlemmar 7 recensioner

Verk av Zahra Hankir


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I thought this book was going to be about the history of eyeliner through the ages. It does discuss historical usage of eyeliner but mainly it seems to be essays on individual people who wear eyeliner, what it means to them and how it makes them feel. I found it to be repetitive and only made it about 40% through before I decided to put it down for good.
wildwestcats | Feb 2, 2024 |
Amazingly brave accounts by Arab woman reporters, but almost all of them read like college applications. Did they all answer the same question? "What's it like being an Arab woman reporter?" All the essayists were admirable, their stories fascinating and awful and illuminating, but also in the end it felt like their narratives were snuffed out by the format. It's hard to reach a tight conclusion to a story that includes so much bloodshed and random death and chauvinism, and these essays had to be tied up within a few pages. It's hard to keep a reader captivated when you are forced to summarize your achievements.… (mer)
Gadi_Cohen | 5 andra recensioner | Sep 22, 2021 |
In this collection of essays women journalists write about their lives and work. All of them have reported from war zones, sometimes their own country. They see not just the violence, but the details of daily life amidst the chaos and carnage. They can speak to women surviving in the war zones, and in the repressive regimes of countries like Libya, Yemen and Saudi Arabia. In Libya, if a woman marries a foreigner she cannot pass on her Libyan citizenship to her children, so when they reach 18 they are deported from Libya to their father's country.

They write about the impact of their work on their lives. Some women have put their families in danger by writing articles thought to be critical of the regime. It is a constant theme, the need to be impartial, to report every side, despite political control of the media. Some women have had to leave altogether - to be able to work, or even to save their lives. Some have remained single because no man would marry a woman so impure as to be a journalist, working with men.

The women reporting from Syria provide far more nuanced perspectives on the war than those we are used to receiving. The articles from Syria are, perhaps, the most devastating in the collection.
… (mer)
pamelad | 5 andra recensioner | Jan 13, 2020 |
Just recently, Twitter brought my attention to a review at The Asian Review of Books: a collection called Our Women on the Ground, Arab Women Reporting from the Arab World, edited by Zahra Hankir. I bought a Kindle edition of it there and then. Because just as I found rel="nofollow" target="_top">Mercé Rodoreda's fiction set in the Spanish Civil War compelling, I wanted to read women's points of view about the conflicts in the Middle East. After all, in modern conflict, it is nearly always women who bear the brunt of it.

The collection comprises nineteen Arab women journalists reporting on their homelands. The foreword by Christiane Amanpour reminds the reader that the Balkan Wars of the 1990s brought an end to immunity for journalists. They were no longer considered objective witnesses. Regardless of gender, they became targets. Journalism has become a very dangerous profession, perhaps especially so when reporting on movements for reform in a corrupt regime or in a murderous genocidal state like Islamic State a.k.a. Daesh. We are told in the introduction by Zahra Hankir that some of the journalists (sahafiyat) featured in this book have been sexually assaulted, threatened, propositioned, detained or even shot at while on the job. The book pays homage to those who have died as well. The Middle East and North Africa is the most dangerous area anywhere in the world for journalists.

It is obviously more difficult for women to be journalists in some cultures than in others. In the Middle East and other conservative societies, societal norms discourage women from journalism. It can mean defying family and community, and it brings unique challenges and entails sacrifices specific to women. At the same time, in pursuit of getting a full understanding of a story by including the female perspective, women can sometimes enter places where men cannot go, and they can sometimes access people more freely than men can. (Geraldine Brooks wrote about this in Nine Parts of Desire, if I remember correctly). The first piece, 'The Woman Question' by Hannah Allam, begins by introducing the spaces where she found her stories during the Iraq War: in kitchens without electricity; in a bedroom with a mortar crater in the ceiling; in a beauty salon, or during 'Ladies Hour' in a hotel swimming pool. And then she goes on to say that her reports are more representative because the years of war have resulted in a population where more than half the people are women, and many of them are heads of the household because their men were dead or missing or exiled.

The footage of car bombings that was on our screens throughout 2006 seems different when you look at it from a woman's point-of-view. Daily car deaths often had death tolls of eighty or more, and most casualties were men because of the venues where the bombings occurred. That meant eighty new widows and dozens of newly fatherless children. Each week 500+ Iraqi women became the breadwinner.
At their most desperate, some women entered into so-called temporary marriages that weren't intended to last long. Essentially, these marriage were prostitution with a thin veneer: men with money to spare would pay the women in exchange for sex, but because the couple was technically 'married', however briefly, the arrangement was deemed legitimate according to some Shi'a Islamic rulings.

A widow named Nisreen told me her hands shook and her face reddened with shame when she signed a temporary marriage contract in exchange for fifteen dollars a month plus groceries and clothes for her five children.

'My son calls me a bad woman, a prostitute. My children have no idea I did this for their sake,' Nisreen said. ('The Woman Question' by Hannah Allam, p. 4)

I think that many Western feminists will bristle at the hypocrisy of this, in a society that forces women to cover up in the name of modesty:
Even in wartime, women in Najaf wear abayas, long billowy robes that leave only their faces, hands and feet exposed. I remember sweat trickling down my back as I crouched in the courtyard listening to gunfire. Running in an abaya was a special skill that we honed each time we had to take cover: you use your left hand to hold the silky fabric under yoru chin to keep it in place and your right hand to hike up the bottom to free your feet. (ibid, p.10)

To read the rest of my review please visit https://anzlitlovers.com/2019/12/26/our-women-on-the-ground-arab-women-reporting...… (mer)
anzlitlovers | 5 andra recensioner | Dec 25, 2019 |



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