Gender Issues

Women approve of FGM more than men in Egypt, survey reveals

Even though the country first outlawed FGM in 2008 and further deemed it a felony in 2016, 51 percent of Egyptian women still approve of the procedure. Female genital mutilation (FGM), which is defined as a “partial or total removal of external genitalia, or any other injury to the female genital organs for non-medical reasons” by the World Health Organization…

What Arab Publics Think: Findings from the Fifth Wave of Arab Barometer

Key Findings from Wave 5: Half of Arabs want better ties with China while roughly four-in-ten want stronger relations with the U.S & Russia. Many want an increase in foreign aid, but are are largely indifferent to whether it comes from the E.U. or other countries. Few favor Iran while Saudi favorability has declined since 2016, leaving Turkey as the…

Prominent Tunisian gay rights activist flees to France after death threats

Mounir Batour ran in Tunisia’s presidential election as an openly gay candidate. He now says his life is in danger A former presidential candidate and leader of Tunisia’s largest gay rights group said he has been forced to leave the country and take refuge in France after he has received “very serious” death threats. Mounir Baatour ran in the 2019…

Do Female Local Councilors Improve Women’s Representation?

Tunisia’s 2018 municipal elections, in which a legislated quota was implemented and women won 47 percent of seats, raises questions about whether electing female councilors improves women’s representation in clientelistic settings. Using data from the Local Governance Performance Index (LGPI), an original survey of 3,600 Tunisians conducted in 2015 by the Program on Governance and Local Development (GLD), this article…

Support for feminism among highly religious Muslim citizens in the Arab region

Public opinion studies argue that in Middle Eastern and North African countries, Muslims support gender equality less than non-Muslims. This overlooks the diversity in religion–feminism relations. Highly religious Muslims who support feminism are disregarded, even though in-depth studies have repeatedly pointed to their existence. Grounded in a structured anthology of qualitative studies on Muslim feminism, we provide the first ever…

How Polities Shape Support for Gender Equality and Religiosity’s Impact in Arab Countries

Previous public opinion studies argued that in the Arab Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Muslim citizens support gender equality less than non-Muslims, due to Islamic-patriarchal socialization. Deviating from this Orientalist narrative, we formulate a context-dependent agentic-socialization framework, which acknowledges religiosity’s and gender equality’s multidimensionality along with the MENA’s political-institutional diversity. We expect that religious service attendance and devotion decrease…

An Empirical Analysis of the Women and Peace Hypothesis

For decades, social scientists have questioned whether women are more politically tolerant, peaceful, and less likely to prefer war to solve international conflict compared to men. Empirical analyses have been limited to a few geographic regions: North America (the United States); the Middle East (Israel and the core Arab World); and Africa (Rwanda). Furthermore, the measurement of the dependent variable,…

Tunisia At A Crossroads

Key Findings: Perceptions of economic conditions have significantly deteriorated since 2011. Trust in the government and parliament are low, but Tunisians have far more confidence in the security services and the judiciary. Nearly all Tunisians say corruption remains rampant, while fewer than half believe the government is taking steps to address the problem. Desire to emigrate is high and growing,…