I am passionate aboutI’m a feminist, women’s rights activist, and a social entrepreneur. My
work aims to unearth the labyrinth of gender-based issues affecting Arab
women throughout the world from a place of compassion and unconditional fond
regard, with the conviction that deviating from the norm is to be celebrated.
I’m passionate about defining Arab feminism and encouraging Palestinian
women embrace that feminism in order to reclaim their agency as active and
equal members of society.
In Palestine, we’ve conflated tradition with gender-based discrimination
and it’s crippling what used to be a vibrant culture. Unfortunately, our
society and legal system justify human rights violations with honor. Honor
plays a very critical role in the social structure of the Arab world. It’s
inextricably coupled with the notion of modesty, both of which are used to
reinforce a family’s collective status of dignity. Now, here’s the catch:
The honor rests solely on women’s behavior, voices, and bodies. The moment
women are born onto this earth, our bodies as flesh and blood was no longer
simply that. Instead, they are transformed into an abstraction. As our bodies
are the vessels containing the family honor, our control over it is
forfeited. I believe that a woman’s love for herself, strength in nature,
and control over her own are lost when societal standards define her purpose
in the world before she is even born.
We have been occupied for 70 years. Why do we keep waiting for occupation to
end before tending to serious socio-cultural issues? Because we’ve waited
so long, using occupation as the rug under which we brush socio-cultural
issues, we’ve let generations of women pass us by who dealt with
gender-based discrimination and oppression.
I am passionate about empowering Palestinian women because I want women to
stop existing despite themselves. I want to restructure our society into one
which fosters vibrant women who are able to live freely, and contribute equal
members of society.
ActionsI am the founder of a socially-conscious fashion brand which donates proceeds
to women's empowerment projects in the West Bank. The apparel is all produced
in the West Bank and in Gaza to support the local economy and small
businesses. I run and organize feminist workshops in the West Bank to create
safe spaces for women to step forward and share their stories.
Through the BabyFist start-up and blog, my workshops and projects, a
conversation about Palestinian women's empowerment has been fostered. A
community has been built in which women can support and uplift one another on
the journey of reclaiming women's rights. There is comfort and strength in
the chorus of voices that ring with the survival of brutality, isolation, and