When the revolutions that came to be known as the Arab Spring began in Tunisia in 2010 and spread to several countries around the world, they inspired millions and galvanized the world. But they were missing one essential element: gender equality. The calls for the downfall of the regime were legitimate and remain so to this day, because the State oppresses everyone. But if the State oppresses everyone – men and women – it must be remembered that the State, along with the Street and the Home, together oppress women. And unless the dictator in the presidential palace, on the street corner, and in the bedroom are not overthrown, no one will be free.
Mona Eltahawy is an award-winning columnist and international public speaker on Arab and Muslim issues and global feminism. She is based in Cairo and New York City. She is the author of Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution, released in April 2015, and is a contributor to the New York Times opinion pages. Her commentaries have appeared in several other publications and she is a regular guest analyst on various television and radio shows.
Kianoush Ramezani is an Iranian artist and activist living and working in exile in Paris as a political refugee since 2009. His editorial cartoons appear in national and international media. He observes the society and the educational system, and creates short films and video art.