Thursday, May 11, 2006

Women, the Iraqi Constitution and the Politics of Empire

Women, the Iraqi Constitution & the Politics of Empire

A seminar organised by the Xenos Research Group, Department of Sociology

4.00pm – 6.00pm, Wednesday 17 May 2006
Room 141, Main Building,
Goldsmiths College, Lewisham Way, London SE14 6NW

Among the legal and political disputes surrounding the invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq - disputes concerning among other things US imperialism and UK involvement, the nature of the military resistance, and the importance of oil - comparatively little attention has been paid to the impact of the war and its aftermath on Iraqi society, and in particular on women. This workshop aims to redress this neglect and to take the situation of women in Iraq as a focus in its own right, as well as a prism through which to reconsider debates around the war. In particular, we wish to consider the manner in which the social and political space for women has been violently curtailed both by a 'democratic' constitution that defines their civil status in patriarchal and ethno-religious terms, and by an ongoing military conflict that functions as a vehicle for extreme forms of misogyny and oppression.


Iraqi Women's Struggle Against the Occupation and Political Islam
Houzan Mahmoud, Organisation for Women's Freedom in Iraq

Civility and Solidarity
Alejandro Colás, School of Politics and Sociology, Birkbeck College, University of London

If you wish to attend please contact Alberto Toscano:

About Xenos – theory and research about contemporary geosocial and geopolitical conflicts

The main aim of Xenos is to develop in a multidisciplinary way new approaches to thinking about and researching the geosocial and geopolitical conflicts we see today. This includes transnational and sub-national conflicts and wars based on ethnic and civic nationalism, religious authoritarianism and transnational political violence. For more information on Xenos seminars, e-mail:, or contact Alberto Toscano ( or Chetan Bhatt ( To become a member of the Xenos open discussion list, e-mail: and include the phrase 'subscribe xenos-l' in the body of your email.

Xenos, Department of Sociology, Goldsmiths College, University of London, Lewisham Way, London SE14 6NW, 0207 919 7171.
Other links: Reawakening Secularism in Iraq | International Humanist and Ethical Union, IRIN | Women's shelter to open in protected Baghdad location

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