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Al-Ali, Nadje and Tas, Latif (2021) 'Kurdish women’s struggles with gender equality: from ideology to practice.' Third World Quarterly, 42 (9). pp. 2133-2151.

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The article explores the relationship between theory and practice in terms of gender-based equality and justice within both the armed units and the political–legal movement linked to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Turkey and transnationally. An analysis of the historical developments of both political ideology and mobilisation reveals the radical shift towards a stated commitment to gender-based equality that has taken place within a wider political transformation from a nationalist independence movement to a movement pursuing radical democracy. The article focuses on the dialectical relationship between the writings of the founder of the PKK, Abdullah Öcalan, and the struggle of Kurdish female militants and political activists to challenge male hegemony and patriarchal gender norms. We recognise the centrality of Öcalan’s writings in the shift away from the emphasis on national liberation to the idea of radical democracy with gender equality at is centre. However, our main argument developed in the article is to recognise the importance of women’s resistance and struggle to implement gender-based equality while we also highlight gaps between ideological pronouncements and everyday practices. Throughout the article we refer to Kurdish women fighters’ and activists’ personal experiences within the movement.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Kurdish movement, Turkey, women’s movement, gender equality, gender justice, radical democracy
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Politics & International Studies
ISSN: 01436597
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
SWORD Depositor: JISC Publications Router
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2022 10:37

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