Research Programs: Summer Stipends

Period of Performance

6/1/2015 - 7/31/2015

Funding Totals

$6,000.00 (approved)
$6,000.00 (awarded)

Women, Family and the Modern Nation in Postcolonial Tunisia, 1952-2011

FAIN: FT-229470-15

Amy Aisen Kallander
Syracuse University (Syracuse, NY 13244-0001)

Summer research and writing on Gender Studies, and Near and Middle Eastern History.

This project examines the relation between women, family and modernity in postcolonial Tunisia. It engages with scholarly interest in the relation between women, nationalism, and modernity, and debates regarding liberal and Islamic understandings of women's rights. Building upon feminist theorizations of agency, my project challenges the association between legislative recognition of women's equality, women's employment, and liberal individualism with emancipation. Chapters focus on the dissemination of the Tunisian government's "feminist" rhetoric, the image of women, family and modernity in the women's press, the portrayal of rural women by Tunisian social scientists, and how state investments in education and family planning contributed to reforming women into educated wives and mothers. Without claiming to explain the Tunisian Revolution, my research offers insight on Tunisian society and political culture before January 2011 through its attention to women and gender.

Media Coverage

New Books in Women's History, Amy Kallander Tunisia's Modern Woman (Media Coverage)
Publication: New Books Network
Date: 11/18/2021
Abstract: Podcast episode!
URL: http:////

Associated Products

Tunisia's Modern Woman Nation-Building and State Feminism in the Global 1960s (Book)
Title: Tunisia's Modern Woman Nation-Building and State Feminism in the Global 1960s
Author: Amy Aisen Kallander
Abstract: Claims over women's liberation vocalized by Tunisia's first president, Habib Bourguiba began with legal reforms related to family law in 1956. In this book, Amy Aisen Kallander uses this political appropriation of women's rights to look at the importance of women to post-colonial state-building projects in Tunisia and how this relates to other state-feminist projects across the Middle East and during the Cold War. Here we see how the notion of modern womanhood was central to a range of issues from economic development (via family planning) to intellectual life and the growth of Tunisian academia. Looking at political discourse, the women's press, fashion, and ideas about love, the book traces how this concept was reformulated by women through transnational feminist organizing and in the press in ways that proposed alternatives to the dominant constructions of state feminism.
Year: 2021
Primary URL: http:////
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Type: Single author monograph
ISBN: 9781108961264
Copy sent to NEH?: No