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Women and Work

Women Workers in Palestine

Module

These resources dip into the life of a wedding filmmaker, who films women-only weddings in the most conservative part of Palestine; the stories of a female taxi driver who works in the Israeli parts of Jerusalem; a young police trainee at the Palestinian Police Academy and the hardships of living in occupied Nablus from a mother who takes on male roles in order to keep her family’s toilet paper factory going.

These resources offer a glimpse into the lives of four women in Palestine doing jobs that are seen as unconventional for women. These films provoke questions about what work means to women, as well as what it is about work that they find empowering.

The Middle East region contains countries with some of the lowest rates of female employment in the world. In Palestine, economic opportunities for women and men alike are severely restricted by the Israeli occupation, which affects all aspects of Palestinian life.

Israeli blockades have seriously hindered opportunity for economic growth in Palestinian Territories. Recent research has documented the devastating affect the Israel - Palestine conflict is having on the Gaza economy and the consequences this is having on lives of women, the opportunities available to them and their personal relationships.

After exploring all eight films, reflect on the similarities and the differences in the lives and experiences of these different women undertaking very different jobs but who are often depicted by media, policy makers and politicians as one and the same.