Claiming and reclaiming the digital world as a public space

Experiences and insights from feminists in the Middle East and North Africa

Publication date: 25 November 2020
Author: Francesca El Asmar

This paper seeks to highlight the experiences and aspirations of young women and feminist activists in the MENA region around digital spaces, safety and rights. It explores individual women’s experiences engaging with the digital world, the opportunities and challenges that women’s rights and feminist organizations find in these platforms, and the digital world as a space of resistance, despite restrictions on civic space.

Drawing on interviews with feminist activists from the region, the paper sheds light on women’s online experiences and related offline risks, illustrates patterns and behaviours that prevailed during the COVID-19 pandemic.