Time and location

Thursday, 5 March 2020
19:00 - 21:00
Hauptbücherei Wien - Am Gürtel, Urban-Loritz-Platz 2a, 1070 Vienna


Keynote and discussion

Fatima Sadiqi
Professor of Linguistics and Gender Studies, Morocco

Discussant: Elif Adam, anti-racism activist, Vienna/Berlin

Chair: Helmut Krieger, University of Vienna/VIDC Global Dialogue

Welcome: Magda Seewald, VIDC Global Dialogue


Languages: English and German with simultaneous interpretation

Registration: seewald@remove-this.vidc.org

Silenced (?)! Islamic feminism and social struggles in the Arab world

"Don't categorize me!" Foto © Mona Abaza
"Don't categorize me!" Foto © Mona Abaza


Following the suppression of the revolts across the Arab world in 2011, no peace has come to the region. The recent protest movements in Sudan, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Iraq and Lebanon for example, have proven that the key demands - for a dignified life, political participation and socio-economic justice - remain omnipresent. In many cases, the current social movements are directed against political elites that portray themselves as Islamic. 
The various women's initiatives are not only present in the protests, but often they are leading them. What does this mean in connection with Islamic women's initiatives or Islamic feminisms? To what extent do they develop an Islamic-based criticism of the prevailing conditions and political elites in the Arab world? To what extent are Islamic feminist initiatives perceived and discussed here in Europe?



Fatima Sadiqi

is a linguist and specialist in gender and women’s studies with a focus on North Africa and the greater Middle East. She is affiliated with the Universities of Fez and Al-Akhawayne. Among her many publications are ‘Women, Gender and Language’ (Brill, 2003), ‘Women’s Activism and the Public Sphere: Local/Global Links’ (Journal of Middle Eastern Women’s Studies, 2006), ‘Women and Knowledge in the Mediterranean’ (Routledge, 2013), ‘Moroccan Feminist Discourses’ (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), and ‘Women’s Movements in Post-“Arab Spring” North Africa’ (2016). Fatima Sadiqi’s work has been supported by numerous prestigious awards and fellowships from Harvard University, the Woodrow Wilson Center, the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Centre, and Fulbright. She currently serves on the editorial board of the Oxford Encyclopedia of African Women’s History.


Elif Adam

is an anti-racism activist and educationalist at Minor Projektkontor für Bildung und Forschung in Berlin in the political education project "Democracy, Religion and Diversity Discourses - A Tension Relationship?!" of the Federal Agency for Civic Education in Germany. She studied cultural and social anthropology and is co-founder of the Documentation and Counselling Centre for Islamophobia and Anti-Muslim Racism, which supports women in particular. Elif Adam followed the social protests in Sudan in 2019.


Helmut Krieger

is a social scientist, researcher and senior lecturer at the Department of Development Studies at the University of Vienna, aa well as a consultant to the VIDC Global Dialogue. His main areas of research are development policies in war zones, the antagonism between Israel and Palestine, movements of political Islam in the Arab world, critical state theories and postcolonial theory formation. Current publications include ‘Global Inequality and the Debate on Imperial Domination’ (2019) and ‘Traces Not to be Covered. On the Dialectic of Revolution and Counterrevolution in the Arab World’ (2017).
He is also head of the ADA-funded research project ‘Knowledge Production in Times of Flight and War - Developing Common Grounds for Research in/on Syria (KnowWar)’, a cooperation between the University of Vienna, the Syrian Centre for Policy Research, Birzeit University in the West Bank, Alpen-Adria University in Klagenfurt and Mousawat, Beirut.

Magda Seewald

is a political scientist and has been a project consultant at VIDC since 2005 with a regional focus on the Arab Region and Palestine in particular. She also coordinates a VIDC Global Dialogue series on upheaval within the Arab World. As the gender consultant at VIDC Global Dialogue, she supervises the area of gender sensitisation of men. Magda Seewald is a co-founder of the network ‘REloading Feminismus’. Her latest publication as co-editor is ‘Crisis, Revolt and War in the Arab World’ (2017, together with Helmut Krieger and the VIDC).



Krieger, Helmut/ Seewald, Magda/VIDC (Hrsg): Krise, Revolte und Krieg in der arabischen Welt. Verlag Westfälisches Dampfboot, Münster 2017

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