A Politics of Radical Care: Writing Women into the History of the Egyptian Human Rights Movement

Rediscovering Women's Contributions in the Egyptian Human Rights Movement

  • Date: 28 NOVEMBER 2023  from 17:30 to 19:00

  • Event location: Institute of Advanced Studies - Sala Rossa, Palazzo Marchesini, Via Marsala, 26 - Bologna - In presence and online event

  • Type: Lectures

Human Rights are a key theme in international history and international law, with the Arab world being studied mostly in relation to the trajectories that led the postcolonial states to ratify the major HR international conventions, and to the global growth of the HR movements in the 1980s and the 1990s. In this literature, Arab women are either absent or represented as violated and vulnerable subjects, individuals in need of protection and “international solidarity”. In this talk I argue for the importance of writing a women’s history of the HR movement in Egypt, showing that woman political activists were not only closely working with men to build the movement, but they were also bringing a specific feminist theoretical contribution to it. Feminist activists brought into the HR movement an “ethics of care”, a concept at the core of feminist political philosophy since the early twentieth century, becoming more explicitly formulated in the 1980s. Building on a broad corpus of political biographies of Egyptian women HR activists and combining their empirical analysis with the insights coming from critical, decolonial and First Nations feminist philosophers, I argue that the study of women’s political activism within the HR movement in Egypt allows deepening our transcultural understanding of the feminist ethics and politics of care, and in so doing, to take part in the process of not simply being concerned about the world but caring about it, and thus acting to change things.


ISA Visiting Fellow - Lucia Sorbera

University Of Sydney, Australia

Visit Prof. Sorbera's web page

PhD students and researchers who are interested may request an attendance certificate. 
The delivery of the attendance certificate requires the attendance of at least 70% of the lecture.