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Fighting the Good Fight for Women’s Lives

Saturday, September 9, 2006

NPR “All Things Considered” / By Jacki Lyden / Listen
Delegates from developing countries, many from Islamic nations, met in Washington, DC to compare notes on the struggle to advance women’s rights. “Any sort of progress toward modernism, toward what we consider egalitarian societies, involves the basic structure of the family,” Afkhami says. “All the arguments for backwardness and fundamentalism really focuses on women.”

Beyond the Veil – Women and Change in the Middle East

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars “Dialogue Radio” / By George Liston Seay / Listen
To affect change, women must take charge of their own destiny. They must reclaim the tenets of their faith. They must also be willing to challenge deeply rooted traditions.

Women and Democracy: Democratizing the Middle East?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

The Fares Center for Eastern Mediterranean Studies at Tufts University / Listen
Autonomous grassroots organizations in different Muslim-majority countries have partnered to create a Guide to Family Law in the Maghreb. They are also campaigning for more egalitarian family laws in their societies.

Learning Center Conducts Workshops on Empowerment of Women

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

VOA News / Listen
An organization headquartered in Washington is dedicated to strengthening women’s leadership, communications, and advocacy skills. Its president describes the ways that women are being helped to contribute to democracy and peace building in their nations.

Muslim Countries: Can Women Have A Voice In A Men’s World?

Friday, October 17, 2003

To The Point KCRW Los Angeles / By Warren Olney / Listen
Muslim countries traditionally offer few leading roles for women. Does the selection of the first Muslim woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize change the equation? Can democracy be realized in Muslim nations if women there do not have equal rights? We get views from Benazir Bhutto, former Prime Minister of Pakistan, an associate professor of political science, specialized on the issues of Islam and democracy, the founder and president of Women-s Learning Partnership, the director of an Islamic Center and a former U.S diplomat.

And The Winner Is…

Friday, October 10, 2003

WBUR Boston NPR / Listen
Shirin Ebadi becomes the first Muslim woman to be awarded the Nobel Peace prize. Ms. Afkhami’s reaction is one of pure joy for Shirin Ebadi as well as for women representatives from around the world, especially in Muslim-majority countries. “It is fantastic to see this kind of support for voices of moderation, voices of reason”.

US, Women’s Rights Groups Work to Raise Status of Women in Iraq, Afghanistan

Wednesday, May 28, 2003

VOA News / Listen
Do culture or religion explain why women have lesser status than men in many Muslim countries? Mahnaz Afkhami said she doesn’t think so. She adds that culture is not fixed and is always evolving.

Iran: Theocracy and Democracy

Monday, April 28, 2003

WAMU American University Radio “The Kojo Nnamdi Show” / By Kojo Nnamdi / Listen
As Iraq’s Shiite Muslims emerge from Saddam’s shadow, we go inside neighboring Iran to examine a government they may emulate – one that adds a splash of democracy to a religious theocracy. Afkhami says that in Iran elections include pre-selected candidates, chosen according to values in line with theocratic arrangements.

Islam On The Internet

Saturday, March 23, 2002

NPR “All Things Considered” / By Davar Ardalan / Listen
For many Muslim women, the Internet has become a safe portal where traditional notions of the ideal Muslim woman can be tested, expanded, and re-created. Through online discussions and bulletin boards, Afkhami said women “learn from each other… so communication is a consciousness-raising vehicle.”

Women and Economy

Monday, December 17, 2001

NPR “Morning Edition” / By Kathleen Schalch / Listen
Economists have long argued that countries with fundamentalist regimes suffer economically because women are not allowed to participate. Afkhami recalls that when she was a high-ranking government official in Iran, she was legally restricted from traveling without her husband’s permission.

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