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Democratization and Women’s Political Leadership in North Africa

Valentine Moghadam

Abstract


In the spring of 2011 citizens in one Arab country after another rose in defiance of authoritarian regimes to demand political change. It appeared that the region had caught up with the “third wave” of democratization — perhaps even ushering in a fourth one — and would embark on successful democratic transitions. After all, polls since 2000 had shown strong support for democracy in almost all Arab countries (Moaddel, 2007). The road since then, however, has been rocky with quite different trajectories that a burgeoning body of literature has analyzed. Less researched has been the gendered nature of the uprisings, that is, how gender relations and women’s mobilizations have shaped these trajectories, as well as how women and their rights have been affected.


Keywords


Arab Spring; democratization

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