"The Eloquence of Silence" provides the most comprehensive analysis to date of gender relations in Algeria from the pre-colonial era to the present. By tracing the changes in women's roles, Marnia Lazreg illuminates the achievements as well as the setbacks that characterize women's lives in contemporary Africa and makes an important contribution to ongoing feminist debates about how to conceptualize the experience of women whose history, culture and nationality are "different."
Using an interdisciplinary approach, the book marks a major departure from more traditional studies of Algerian women which usually examine female roles in relation to Islam. Lazreg argues that Algerian women's roles are shaped by a variety of structural and symbolic factors including colonial domination, demographic change, nationalism, socialist development policy of the 1960s and '70s, family formation and the progressive shift to a capitalist economy. Special attention is given to the rise of fundamentalism and its impact on gender relations.
Covering both pre-colonial and colonial eras as well as the independence period, this book focuses on the changes that took place in family structure and law, customs, education and the war of decolonization. Lazreg approaches the post-colonial era through an examination of how Algeria's model of economic development, structural adjustment policies and the rise of religious-political opposition affected women.
"The Eloquence of Silence" provides valuable insight into the interface between gender, culture, politics and development. It will undoubtedly make a major contribution to the existing literature in feminist studies, sociology and provide an innovative intervention in the ongoing discussions about the question of difference.
"Professor Lazreg's book is an important corrective to other studies of women in the Middle East published in recent years. She makes many insightful and original points about Algerian women and the question of why Algerian society has produced traditional concepts of femininity despite women's full participation in the revolution. The success of the book lies in her solid analysis of the modern historical background--in its social, economic and political dimensions."
-Jeanette Wakin, Columbia University
"Only Marnia Lazreg could have written this valuable book. Her ability for original thinking and incisive analysis is already well documented in her earlier works. In this work, however, she combines these abilities with a unique perspective. This perspective is rooted in her experience as a feminist who actually endured the colonialization of her homeland by a Western power and then lived in the United States through the second wave of feminism and interacted with it. This book articulates in an authentic voice some of the major concerns of Third World women who, while committed to feminism, are deeply troubled by the Western, middle-class face of the movement. It is a book everyone should read."
-Azizah al-Hibri, University of Richmond
"Spanning more than a century of history, from precolonial times to the present, Lazreg's examination of the political and cultural processes that have shaped gender relations in Algeria is both thorough and bold."
|Women in Pre-Colonial Algeria|
|The Colonial War in Fact and Fancy|
|Exposing and Reconstrucing Algerian Identity|
|Reform and Resistance|
|Women's Lived Reality in and Under Colonial Society|
|Nationalism, Decolonization, and Gender|
|State, Socialism, Development and Women|
|Consciousness, Culture, and Change|
|Women's Rise to the Word|
|Between God and Man|
|Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.|
Tertiary; University or College
For Ages: 18 years old
Number Of Pages: 288
Published: 13th October 1994
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.88
Weight (kg): 0.48
Edition Number: 1