During the last couple of years there has been a series of seminar on the events related to the "Arab spring" in Yemen, Syria, Tunisia and Egypt given at University of Bergen. However, none of them focused on the gendered aspects of these events. In this seminar a special emphasis will be given to gender implications of the "Arab spring". In particular, we would like to address theoretical and historical aspects of the events that may represent new trends on gender norms in the Middle East and North Africa region; and to show changes and continuities in the struggle for women's rights, as well as women's mobilizations and movements in the region that have come to the fore as a result of the recent events.

Nadje Al-Ali (director of the Gender Studies Centre at SOAS, University of London) is invited to give a keynote lecture based on her article "Gendering the Arab Spring" that was published in Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication in 2012.

Dr. Al-Ali's main research interests are gender theory, feminist activism, women and gender in the Middle East, transnational migration and diaspora mobilisation, war, conflict and reconstruction. Recently she has given a number of talks related to the events of the Arab Spring. We have asked her to elaborate on her ideas of what a gendered lens may offer as a point of departure for future research on the Middle East and North Africa region, in particular after the events related to the "Arab Spring".

In addition, Nefissa Naguib (senior researcher and social anthropologist at CMI) and Kjetil Selvik (senior researcher and political scientist at CMI) have been invited as discussants based on their research and expert knowledge on Egypt and Syria respectively.


13:30 - 13:45
Welcome and introduction by Silvia Bruzzi (SMI)

13:45 - 14:30 
Keynote speaker Nadje Al-Ali: "Gendering the Arab Spring"

14:30 - 15:00 
Coffee and refreshments

15:00 - 15:30 
Discussants Nefissa Naguib and Kjetil Selvik
Chair: Marianne Bøe (SKOK)

15:30 - 16:00 
Questions and comments from the audience
Chair: Gilda Seddighi (SKOK)

The seminar is a joint event organised by the Centre for Women's and Gender Research (SKOK) and the Centre for Middle Eastern and Islamic Studies (SMI), University of Bergen.

Event photo: Rémi Dewière (Tunisi, 2011).