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Enabling Women's Agency: Arab Women Speak Out

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Abstract:

Arab Women Speak Out (AWSO), an advocacy and training program, is centered around the life histories of thirty Arab women who have achieved their goals by overcoming social, economic or political obstacles. Arab women researchers and filmmakers produced the materials, which include a series of ten documentary video profiles, training and discussion materials, a tool for monitoring the image of women in the media and a case history publication profiling 30 women who have achieved personal and professional goals in diverse areas. With their discussions guided by a moderator and a training manual, nearly 80,000 women from six Arab countries have participated in the program. During the training workshops, facilitators convey critical thinking skills and encourage women to interrogate gender, refine their negotiating skills, strengthen social networks, and participate in public life, among other topics. The 2001 evaluation survey used a posttest-only control group design. Qualitative research complemented the survey findings. This study sought to answer this central question: "Was participation in this particular communication program related to changes in the aforementioned variables and, ultimately, to human agency or the propensity to act?" A partial answer was found using multiple logistic regression: the odds of starting a new business venture were 2.5 times greater for participants than for non-participants, while the odds of taking an active part in community meetings was 2.3 times greater for participants than for non-participants. The presentation will discuss other findings in light of the theoretical framework that informed program design and guided the analysis.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

women (116), particip (93), social (47), develop (36), arab (34), agenc (30), train (25), communiti (25), chang (24), new (23), self (22), role (21), world (20), efficaci (20), variabl (20), respond (19), action (19), econom (19), video (19), model (19), activ (18),

Author's Keywords:

human agency, women's empowerment, Arab women
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Association:
Name: International Communication Association
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http://www.icahdq.org


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MLA Citation:

Underwood, Carol R. and Jabre, Bushra. "Enabling Women's Agency: Arab Women Speak Out" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Marriott Hotel, San Diego, CA, May 27, 2003 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p111741_index.html>

APA Citation:

Underwood, C. and Jabre, B. , 2003-05-27 "Enabling Women's Agency: Arab Women Speak Out" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Communication Association, Marriott Hotel, San Diego, CA Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p111741_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Arab Women Speak Out (AWSO), an advocacy and training program, is centered around the life histories of thirty Arab women who have achieved their goals by overcoming social, economic or political obstacles. Arab women researchers and filmmakers produced the materials, which include a series of ten documentary video profiles, training and discussion materials, a tool for monitoring the image of women in the media and a case history publication profiling 30 women who have achieved personal and professional goals in diverse areas. With their discussions guided by a moderator and a training manual, nearly 80,000 women from six Arab countries have participated in the program. During the training workshops, facilitators convey critical thinking skills and encourage women to interrogate gender, refine their negotiating skills, strengthen social networks, and participate in public life, among other topics. The 2001 evaluation survey used a posttest-only control group design. Qualitative research complemented the survey findings. This study sought to answer this central question: "Was participation in this particular communication program related to changes in the aforementioned variables and, ultimately, to human agency or the propensity to act?" A partial answer was found using multiple logistic regression: the odds of starting a new business venture were 2.5 times greater for participants than for non-participants, while the odds of taking an active part in community meetings was 2.3 times greater for participants than for non-participants. The presentation will discuss other findings in light of the theoretical framework that informed program design and guided the analysis.

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Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 12
Word count: 6252
Text sample:
Tracking #: ICA-19-11265 Enabling women’s agency: Arab Women Speak Out Myriad women in the Arab world are active participants in day-to-day practices and struggles that create opportunities and improve the conditions under which they live. Yet the popular media and the academic press alike conventionally portray Arab women as passive powerless victims of patriarchal societies1 or parrot Hollywood’s reification of women as glamorous commodities for the male gaze. Such images of disempowerment are both self-perpetuating and inaccurate. There are
and Research Tunis Tunisia November 1997. 29 While the training manual topics are equally relevant to men and participants expressed the importance of men’s involvement in the project only a few men have participated to date. 30 As there is no equivalent in Arabic for the term “gender” as understood today we chose to refer to gender constructs as “social roles.” 31 Kiiti N. & Nielsen E. 1999. “The Advocate and the Facilitator: What’s the Difference?” In Shirley White


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