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KQED Interview: Women in the Middle East

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

KQED Forum with Michael Krasny interviews Mahnaz Afkhami, Isobel Coleman, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and on women, social change and social justice in the Middle East.

Iranian Women Campaign To End Discriminatory Laws Against Them

Friday, December 11, 2009

VOA News / By Judith Latham / Listen
One way the One Million Signatures Campaign has overcome those barriers is by reaching out to women through “one-on-one” contact. Afkhami said women in the campaign, who go into private homes as well as to places where women gather, try to get other women to sign on to the petition for change. “But if they don’t, they leave the information with them because the aim is to get one million activists, not so much one million signatures,” she said.

Women’s Rights In Iran

Friday, November 27, 2009

PRI’s The World / By Marco Werman / Listen
Iran’s authorities recently confiscated Shirin Ebadi’s Nobel Peace prize medal. Activists say the move against the Iranian human rights lawyer exemplifies Tehran’s hostility toward women. Mahnaz Afkhami was the Minister for Women’s Affairs in Iran before the 1979 revolution. She now lives in Bethesda, Maryland. Afkhami wrote the foreword to a new book called Iranian Women’s One Million Signatures Campaign for Equality. Anchor Marco Werman talks with Afkhami about the women’s movement in Iran and the ‘One Million Signatures’ campaign.

Executed But Not Forgotten: Iran’s Farrokhroo Parsay

Sunday, August 23, 2009

NPR / By Liane Hansen / Listen
Host Liane Hansen interviews Mahnaz Afkhami, a former Minister of State for Women’s Affairs in Iran, about Farrokhroo Parsay. Parsay was the minister of education from 1968 to 1977 and was executed after the revolution for corruption. Parsay was one of Iran’s most important advocates for women’s rights.

‘I was Iran’s last woman minister’

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


BBC World Service / By Nikki Jecks / Listen
The Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, has announced he intends to appoint Iran’s first women cabinet ministers since the 1979 Islamic revolution. Mahnaz Afkhami was one of the last two women to take part in an Iranian government before the revolution.

Despite Odds, Women’s Movement Persists In Iran

Sunday, February 1, 2009

NPR Weekend Edition / By Jacki Lyden and Davar Iran Ardalan / Listen
Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images - Women's rights activist Shirin Ebadi has urged Iran for years to stop executing people convicted of crimes they committed under the age of 18.One of the most remarkable and under-reported stories in Iran is the strength and character of its women’s movement. Through politics, literature, religion and poetry, women’s voices have at times been like roars, and at others, like whispers of dissent. Women continue to be both targets of persecution and agents of change, and for more than a decade, NPR’s Davar Ardalan and Jacki Lyden have been tracking those changes. It began in 1995 when Jacki went to Iran at a time when not many female reporters had been there.

Security Council revisits resolution on Women, Peace and Security

Thursday, November 6, 2008

United Nations Radio / By Bissera Kostova and Sandra Guy / Listen
Mahnaz Afkhami speaks on the condition of women in Iran in the wake of a UN report on human rights in the country. While much progress has been made in education, still a number of family laws and criminal laws discriminate against women. The One Million Signatures Campaign is an effort to peacefully negotiate for change.

UN concerned over discrimination against women and torture in Iran

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

United Nations Radio / By Bissera Kostova / Listen
A UN report on human rights in Iran says the country has made progress in improving health and education for women, but still has discriminatory laws against them. Mahnaz Afkhami says the Iranian government is not justified in defending discrimination of women and practices amounting to torture as being part of Islamic law.

Iran’s Relations with the United States

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Washington Monthly on the Radio / By Peter Laufer and Markos Kounalakis / Listen
Mahnaz Afkhami speaks of the conflict between Iran’s sophisticated civil society and a medieval set of laws, which has imposed the segregation of women (gender apartheid so to speak) in public spaces. She also mentions the possibilities offered by technology in communicating with and supporting the women’s movement in Iran.

What Does Power Look Like?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

International Museum of Women “Women, Politics and Power” Exhibit / By Masum Momaya / Listen
Ms. Afkhami speaks about the women’s movement in Iran, fundamentalisms, international movement building, and concepts of leadership.

About Mahnaz Afkhami

A lifetime advocate for the rights of women, Mahnaz Afkhami works with activists across the world, especially in Muslim majority societies, to help women become leaders. She is Founder and President of Women’s Learning Partnership for Rights, Development, and Peace (WLP), Executive Director of Foundation for Iranian Studies...more