Palestinian Women Taking Risks
Israelis and Palestinians have produced a crucial conflict that has been going on since 1987 known as the Intifada. In history, their considerations, thoughts, and feelings of Palestinian women were not taken into thought when the attacks from Israel began. The Gaza Strip had violent disturbances happening between Palestine and Israel that began in early December 1967. The Palestinian’s have had two Intifada that have been violent killing millions of people and continues to go on (Rigby 1). With all the violent attacks that were going within Palestine and Israel, Palestinian women were tired of being cooped up and brought out what they are capable of. These women found out that they were more powerful than what they had imagined. The war has allowed them to discover new roles and much more through the invasion of Palestine and even though the war is terrible, it has had some positive effects on women: they are able to take risks.
When Israelis started invading Palestinian’s lives, some dramatic effects and changes were added to their life, they were exposed to immense violence and started having boundaries to where they could go. Palestinian people were prevented from living in their own villages and towns. There were times that Palestinian’s workplaces were ten minutes away; it will take them from two hours to sometimes days to get there (My Home, My Prison). Palestinians economic survival has become a big issue, since they are not allowed to go into certain places; it is hard for them to find jobs and to support their family. Funds had been considerably cut down even to the events that had once benefited women. An unspecified amount of women’s organizations were beginning to struggle and day-care centers started to close down (Gluck 212). Palestinian’s lives were beginning to fall apart with all the restrictions and they were not happy: especially the women. Women had been struggling the most because of their beliefs and traditions. Palestinian women have dealt with a harsh culture, in which they usually have to endure a different life from men. In order to support their family, some families would rather have their daughters drop out of high school or not continue on to college so they could marry at a young age. Women are more sacrificed and are forced to wear more restrictive clothing than men (Gluck 212). Women’s traditional society has not yet changed since from their grandmother’s or their mother’s years. The fact still remains that men have had a higher status than women. One of the women’s main purposes in their tradition is to prepare their sons for the future in which they have to hold the responsibility of taking care of the money and the family (Warnock 20-21). The women are automatically often thought of as being a wife and needing the protection of a man. Women were looked upon as fragile and not independent of a man. According to the men, the women’s job was to be the wife, and in exchange the men would support her with food and clothing. As stated in the Palestinian belief, once a woman got married, the wife grew independent from her parents and became dependent on her husband. If her husband happened to die, she must remain with his family. But if the husband happened to leave her or divorce her, she could go back to the care of her father or a male member of the family. Throughout the year’s women have suffered through their share of hardships facing evacuation, family loss, and many more deprivations. Palestinian women went through a lot of difficulties turning them into victims; in which they had no voice and felt the preoccupation that their social position includes (Warnock 18). The women have been through pain and are often portrayed as powerless women. People did not specifically envision women taking charge and standing up for their rights and beliefs. Multiple groups of women have gathered and created committees to help other women overachieve in their...
Cited: Baroud, Ramzy, and Turk M. Abu. Searching Jenin: Eyewitness Accounts of the Israeli Invasion, 2002. Seattle: Cune Press, 2003. 36. Print.
Giacaman, Rita and Penny Johnson. “Palestinian Women: Building Barricades and Breaking Barriers.” Intifada: The Palestinian Uprising Against Israeli Occupation. Zachary Lockman and Joel Beinin, Eds. Boston: South End Press, 1989. 155-. Print.
Gluck, Sherna B. An American Feminist in Palestine: The Intifada Years. Philadelphia: Temple UP, 1994. 211-12. Print.
My Home, My Prison. Dir. Susana Blaustein-Muñoz, and Erica Marcus. Perf. Raymonda H. Tawil, and Sharon Silva. Narr. Martin Sheen, and Gail. Videocassette. Women Make Movies, 1992.
Rigby, Andrew. Living the Intifada. London: Zed Books, 1991. 1-22. Print.
Warnock, Kitty. Land Before Honour: Palestinian Women in the Occupied Territories. New York: Monthly Review Press, 1990. 20-31. Print.
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