The Definitive Guide to Living in the Capital , Cairo , Egypt

Arts & Culture

Educate Yourself: Best Books About Gender-Specific Violence Against Women

awareness cairo egypt Feminism gender Mansoura Nayera
Educate Yourself: Best Books About Gender-Specific Violence Against Women
written by
Nada Medhat

With the most recent heartbreaking, brutal murder in El-Mansoura, conversations are once again blossoming. People realise, or they don’t, the pattern in which young women face violence that often reaches the extremities of murder. As draining, as painful, as this discussion, it is much better that it keeps going rather than not. 

Unfortunately, as this discourse continues, ignorance becomes more and more apparent, from all of us. Very few realise the complex, international systematic pattern this secluded incident in an Egyptian city falls into. To speak correctly and productively, for better awareness and hopefully large-scale change in the country, we must first educate ourselves on the matter; understand this epidemic; how far we’ve come, how far we still have to go, why this happens and how it can stop. Those selected non-fiction studies are a good place for us to start.

Resistance, Revolt, and Gender Justice in Egypt by Mariz Tadros

Feminist movements and gender justice resistance movements are important and relevant all over the world, but for a first read, it’s important to read it in the context of Egypt above all. Starting with women’s involvement in the January 25  revolution and tracing the arc of women’s movements across the past two decades, Tadros paints a comprehensive picture of the intersectionality of the revolution, the islamist movement, and Egypt’s general political landscape with feminist movements.

Peggy Reeves Sanday: Fraternity Gang Rape: Sex, Brotherhood, and Privilege on Campus by Peggy Reeves Sanday

The world isn’t made up of separated, secluded countries; what happens in one place echoes in another. And essentially, human behaviour is the same, even if it dresses in different ways, through cultural differences. The concept of college fraternities doesn’t exist much in Egypt, and where it does, differs greatly from its counterpart in the United States. Still, however, this painfully detailed study of male bonding through horrific rituals, and perpetutating of rape culture, upholding the “bro code” above all, is highly relevant to how we live in Egypt, where the details differ but the core remains the same.

The Femicide Machine by Sergio González Rodríguez

Repeating what we’ve written in the previous entry, this book is focused on Mexico and the murder of females predominantly based on their gender. Unfortunately, as we’re often reminded, this isn’t a particular case of Mexico. Understanding one horrific city for women on the borders of Mexico and how it allowed such a high rate of femicide, allows us to identify the same pattern around us, if on a smaller scale, and with the identification comes the precedence of halting this machine. 

They Didn’t See Us Coming: The Hidden History of Feminism in the Nineties by Lisa Levenstein

These days we often see misunderstanding, often willful ones, of the feminist movement. Especially in Egypt. With its many waves, and its current state in Egypt, clearly on social media discussions, it’s forgotten just exactly what the true purpose of any feminist movement is. Women too, sometimes, forget just how far the women of the 90s through the feminist movements have come, and affected our lives to these days. It is a reminder of how women have come through their own work, a reminder to keep going on, while focusing on what matters.