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Are Women Important in Gulf Politics? What are the Main Barriers to Gender Equality? Research Paper

Table of Contents Introduction

The Gulf

Gender and Politics in the Gulf

Are Women Important in Gulf Politics?

Main Barriers to Gender Equality


Works Cited

Introduction Majority of the countries in the gulf region, are countries that are undergoing rapid political, social, and above all economic revolutions due to many changes that are taking place in varying spheres of life of their citizenry.

Changes in the leadership orientations or styles have accompanied such radical changes, whereby presently, majority of nations are realizing the role of women, as concerns political and economic development hence, encouraging women participation in fields that many considered suitable for males previously. Such is the case in the gulf politics, whereby women are actively involved in the politics in present times.

Although this is the case, it is important to note here that, still the struggle for gender equality faces many challenges, a fact, which many attribute to the superiority in males’ nationality rights. Such superiority and many other societal forces have acted as major backward pooling forces on women’s endeavors to achieve gender equality.

Although many may argue that, the currently existing women organization are fighting to ensure Gulf countries minimize such disparities, still as Krause (p. 1) argues, such efforts face many obstacles, with the currently existing forms of antagonism towards such efforts by Muslim fanatics. This paper will discuss the importance of women in the Gulf politics and main barriers, which the war against gender discrimination faces in countries that belong to this region.

The Gulf Primarily, countries belonging to this region encircle the Persian Gulf, and form a section of nations, which form the Middle East. Examples of nations belonging to this locality include Bahrain, Kuwait, Iran, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Qatar, Palestinian regions, Jordan, Iraq, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, and Syrian Arab Republic. It is important to note that, there is a difference between these nations and nations, which belong to the Far East region for example, Taiwan and the republic of China (Gulf Today p.1).

Gender and Politics in the Gulf Although to some extent women belonging to this region are making some progress towards liberation from gender discriminations, still their efforts face many challenges.

This is because, research findings by the Nazir (p.1) clearly depicts that, in many ways, still patriarchal laws and many existing societal traditional practices constrain women efforts. Although this is the case, still many organizations that fights against such discriminations have been in the frontline in ensuring countries within this region accept the importance of women participation in all spheres of development.

Get your 100% original paper on any topic done in as little as 3 hours Learn More It is important to note here that, such struggles by gender discrimination fighting bodies have not been fruitless, because currently there is apparent political, social and economic freedom enjoyed by women in some countries, which belong to this region such as Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, and the United Arab Emirates.

On the other hand, although these countries have achieved such mileages as concerns achievement of gender equality, other countries within this region for example, Saudi Arabia still have high levels of such discriminations, a fact that many attribute to the cultural restrictions, which this country has imposed on women.

Politically still women in this region face many challenges with majority of them loosing parliamentary seats to men, something that research has also attributed to the currently existing cultural and social impediments.

As Shanahan (p.1) argues, such societal forces and many cultural barriers since time memorial have been the greatest impediment towards women’s struggle for representation. He further adds that, the political scenario in countries such as Saudi Arabia and Oman is worse.

This is because; in these countries, women are purely underrepresented in the all-political arenas. Although individuals may argue that, in some countries such as Bahrain the gender based political orientation has shifted, still the disparities are clear primarily because, women form less than six percent of the entire parliament population.

As Shanahan further states, majority of nations in this region still respect the olden “hereditary male rule.” In addition, majority of societies within this region believe in the polygamy concept, something that has been the main contributing factor to the disparity that exists.

This is because; such traditional embraced practices have denied such societies female role models, and in case such role models occur for example, Sheikha Lubna (the United Arab Emirates foreign trade minister) then, there rise to power must have some support or connections to some ruling elites.

We will write a custom Research Paper on Are Women Important in Gulf Politics? What are the Main Barriers to Gender Equality? specifically for you! Get your first paper with 15% OFF Learn More Are Women Important in Gulf Politics? As Peterson (34-35) argues, the minimal participation of women in politics is not an indication of lack of ruling supremacy. This is because, critically examination of the roles, which women played in the old Arab societies clearly show that, since time memorial, women have been active participants when it comes to issues that affects the family.

In this regard, regardless of the way the society presents the image of women as concerns politics, women have a crucial role to play. Therefore, this makes it necessary for any ruling system to include women, being the vulnerable group in the community. In addition, it is only through such participations that women can have a stake in the decision making process on issues that affect their well-being.

Due to the currently existing gender discriminations existing in the Gulf countries, majority of countries within this region overlook the role women can play as concerns political-economic development. This is because, when comparing literacy and educational achievement between women and men, both have achieved a lot.

For example, the difference between literacy levels between men and women in the United Arab Emirates is 4%, whereby the men literacy achievement percentage stands at twenty five percent whereas, the women education and literacy achievement percentage stands at twenty one percentage. In other countries for example the republic of Qatar, the enrollment levels of boys and girls in the elementary school level stands at 95 % and 96 % respectively.

The argument that such women achievements occur at lower level learning levels to some extent are wrong due to the increased number of female participants in higher education learning institutions. For example, in Kuwait, majority of students in higher learning institutions are women, a case that is almost similar in Bahrain, whereby more than 72% of students in higher learning centers are women (Krause, p. 8).

Comparing this figures and the nature of contributions such educational achievements can make to these country’s politics is a clear indication that, women too have a role to play as concerns the political development of these countries. This is the case primarily because; there is a close correlation between educational achievement and economic development. Further, economic development depends on the nature of the ruling elites, for they are the main decision makers in any national scenario.

In addition, to such educational achievements, as Abano (p.1) argues, majority of women in this region have the potential to perform and deliver quality results politically. She defends her position by arguing that, gender differentiations are products of many societal forces originating from some groups, a case that is evident in Kuwait, when it comes to the beliefs held by the Fundamentalist Islamic Groups.

She further adds that, considering the continuous advancement, as concerns winning of some parliamentary seats by some women parliamentarians, it becomes necessary for global societies more so the gulf countries to reformulate their policies as concerns gender differentiations. This is because; there is a lot that women can play as concerns the political development of these countries.

Not sure if you can write a paper on Are Women Important in Gulf Politics? What are the Main Barriers to Gender Equality? by yourself? We can help you for only $16.05 $11/page Learn More Clear manifestation of the importance of women in any political scenario in this region is apparent in Omani. As Fatany and Talei (Para. 3-4) argue, majority of women actively involved in politics have a sense of commitment, as concerns the economic development of their countries.

They further add that, there presence in the political arena has seen the country develop most of its economy sections that the country had previously neglected. Although this is the case, it is important to note that, it has never been easy for women to attain such achievements because at all times they have to strictly adhere to men dominated governmental imposed policies hence, the little achievement associated with their efforts.

On the other hand, it is important to note that; majority of voters in some countries in this region is women. For example, research findings by the Yale Global Center on the voting patterns of Bahrain in 2002 showed that, more than fifty-one percent of the voters were females hence, clearly showing the importance of female when it comes to politics of this region (Janardhan, P. 1).

Main Barriers to Gender Equality Achievement of gender equality has been one of the greatest challenges for bodies fighting to ensure societies within this region abolish gender differentiations (which are clear from the simple social systems, to the complex political systems). As in any society, traditions play a central role when it comes to defining roles suitable to different individuals of different sexes in the Gulf region whereby, depending on the political orientation of countries within this region, the Sharia laws finds wide applications.

Although these laws find wide application in many Gulf countries, culture forms the main basis of all role assignments. In addition, it is important to note that, with the increased gender balance campaigns, the war on gender discrimination has gained many achievements as concerns liberating the Gulf women from social, political, and economic oppressions. Such advances are clear in countries for example, Bahrain and Kuwait.

Although this is the case, like any other war, the war of women’s liberation politically, socially, and economically still faces many challenges due to the nature of policies (traditional, social and political), which the Gulf countries have adopted (Janardhan p.1).

Islam as the main religion of this area has been one of the main contributors to the clear role disparity that exist between men and women. This is because; the religion appreciates the gender differences that exist between men and women. This to some extent has been the greatest impediment towards achieving gender equity, because religion forms one of the core factors that determine any society’s lifestyles (Al-Yousef p.2).

For example, cases of the misuse of the Islamic law are prevalent in Bahrain; a country that does not have an integrated family law. On the other hand, it is important to note that, current efforts by gender discrimination fighting bodies to eliminate some personal status law that are discriminatory have always hit a snag, as such efforts receive strong opposition from Islamic extremists (Dunne p.1).

Many societal forces also have been the greatest obstacles towards achievement of gender equality. This is because; there exists a conflict between modernization and globalization with the old embraced values. The religious-tribal aspect forms the main backbone of practices adopted by inhabitants of these regions. Such religious-tribal held values by societies have been greatly jeopardized globalization and modernization efforts.

This is because at one end traditional values create many gender differentiations when it comes to role assignment, participation in labor, and educational attainment among male and female, whereas modernization endeavors to eliminate them. The scenario is even worse when it comes to political and economic developments, due to the fact that, there exist few programs geared towards women empowerment (Dunne p.1).

As Nazir (Para. 22-23) argues, lack enough information to women in this nations is another great hindrance towards achieving gender equality. Lack of information as concerns global leadership, is prevalent in these countries, although to some extent women organizations have tried to bridge the gap. Majority of researchers attribute the lack of information to the media, for many research findings show that, governments control most media houses hence, dictating what people receive.

On the hand, it is important to note that, although such impediments exists, majority of the Gulf countries have come up with initiatives to counter this problem, although some countries still have remained adamant in changing their gender policies for example, Saudi Arabia (Wagner p.1).

Conclusion In conclusion, considering the importance of women’s participation in economic and political development, it is important for countries within this region to try to alleviate the prevalent gender differentiations, which exist presently for better development of these nations.

These countries can achieve this through adoption of policies, which will support women development and innovation efforts in al spheres of development. In addition, these countries should come up with women empowering programs and legislations measures that will oversee protection and respect of their rights by all individuals in the governments. This is because; achievement of this will ensure that, societies eliminate the traditional beliefs, which have imprisoned majority of Women’s innovative initiatives.

Works Cited Al-Yousef, Nourah. The status of women in the Arab gulf countries. 2010. Web.

Abano, Joyce. Many Gulf women qualify for political careers. Zwaya, 2010. Web.

Dunne, Michele. Women’s political participation in the Gulf: a conversation with activists Fatin Bundagji (Saudi Arabia), Rola Dashti (Kuwait), and Munira Fakhoro (Bahrain). Arab Reform Bulletin, 12 Aug. 2008. Web.

Fatany, Samar and Talei, Rafiah. Perspectives: Gulf Arab women breaking the glass ceiling in politics. Common Ground News Service, 2009. Web.

Gulf Today. Gulf countries. 2010. Web.

Peterson, John. The political status of women in the Arab Gulf States. Middle East journal, 43(1) (1989): 34-50. Web.

Janardhan, Meena. In the gulf, women are not women’s friends. Yale Center for the Study of Globalization, 20 June. 2005. Web.

Krause, Wanda. Kuwait program on development, governance, and globalization in the Gulf state: gender and participation in the Arab Gulf. The Center for the Study of Global Governance. 2009. Web.

Nazir, Sameena. Challenging inequality: obstacles and opportunities towards women’s rights In the Middle East and North Africa. Freedom House. 2010. Web.

Shanahan, Roger. Women in Arab politics. The interpreter, 2009. Web.

Wagner, Cynthia. Progress report on discrimination against women. All Business, 1 May. 2008. Web.

Variety and Sincerity: Something to Sing About: the Ashland University Spring Choral Concert Essay

Nursing Assignment Help On March 21st, the Ashland Area Chorus, the Ashland Chamber Choir, the Ashland Women’s Choir, and the University Choir presented a spring concert in the Miller Chapel, titled “Something to Sing About”. Rowland Blackeley and Stephanie Sikora were the directors of this interesting program.

It was a pleasure to have the names of all the chorus members, as well as the accompanists and soloists, listed in the program. The choruses, garbed in various combinations of black and white, threw their hearts into a great variety of music for an appreciative audience of roughly 300 family and friends. The program included examples of all sorts of vocal music, ranging from ancient to modern, religious to popular, reflective to joyful.

The sound of the Ashland Area Chorus reflects the age range and varied backgrounds of its members and has a rich and complex timbre. They started the evening off with a Baroque invitation to the dance in Come Ye Sons Of Art. Henry Purcell wrote both this and the final piece sung by the Area Chorus (Thus Nature Rejoicing), for the birthday of Queen Mary. The rhythm is so lively that Come Ye Sons Of Art really does seem like a dance tune.

It seems to declare the full command of polyphony that had been developing in Western music over the previous century. A bit of fugue seemed to be included, but the music definitely showed counterpoint, since the voices moved separately, but harmoniously, each voice following a slightly different melody, or the same melody at a slightly different point in time. Purcell’s music is so swift and so complex that it is not easy to tease out what he is doing on first hearing.

In light of this, modern listeners are very fortunate to have the opportunity to listen to a piece repeatedly. It is interesting to wonder how many people ever heard this lovely music in Purcell’s lifetime, or how many times they might have ever heard it. Probably only the crowd that attended the Queen’s birthday festivities, and probably only once, are the likely answers.

It is clear that the words of these pieces were significant to the composer; Purcell really “sells” the lyrics with emphasis and repetition. Given how fast the tempo is, however, it is a bit difficult to hear every word clearly.

Getting the syllables out and staying on key AND keeping up with the speed of the music is, naturally, a challenge for the singer, and the clarity of the words is the element that seems to be sacrificed first. Given this, it would have been helpful to have the words in the program. Also, it would have been interesting to know more about the Queen Mary for whom this exquisite and complex music was written.

Get your 100% original paper on any topic done in as little as 3 hours Learn More The only really familiar piece of music in this portion of the program was the Ave Maria by Igor Stravinsky. This is a staple of vocal music, but it never becomes boring. The relatively straightforward melody is easily remembered and the range of notes it covers places it within reach of many amateur singers. It seems to fit into the textural category of a melody with harmonic support.

Stephen Chatman’s setting of a Rossetti poem (Song and Music) was gentle and complex. The piece showed a smooth texture of close harmonies. It would have been lovely to read the words, since the composer was obviously trying to express the words musically.

Johannes Brahms’ melancholy piece titled In Stiller Nacht shows the strong melodic line that he has been known for. The melody is deceptively simple and the harmonies are very close. The texture of the ensemble voices is smooth as a lover’s touch, or a mother’s lullaby.

Brahms appeared three times on the program. Anchoring the popular end of the spectrum, the Chamber Singers presented the Brahms Liebeslieder Waltzes. These are a delight in their variety. It is marvelous how many ways the waltz format has been transformed and re-thought in the course of this one song cycle. The words are by turns tender, troubled, entreating, philosophical, and angry. It was very helpful to have this and all translations of the lyrics that were included in the program.

The waltz entitled Nicht Wandle Mein LIcht has a cajoling and cozening rhythm, exactly in line with the plea of the lover to his beloved that she (presumably) not wander. The listener might wonder whether this feared wandering is a physical peregrination, out into the dangerous night airs (the mid-19th century was still the era when tuberculosis tragically carried off many young people), or an emotional excursion, to meet or find some other competing object of affection.

O die Frauen is deliciously caressing in rhythm and melody and expresses the rueful and bewildered attitude of the male singers towards the mysteries of the female race. Nein, es ist nicht auszukommen mit den Leuten is a headlong rush of outrage and frustration. Ein kleiner, hübscher Vogel sounds like a little bird’s hopping and flight from bush to bush. This is programmatic music without question.

Women’s choruses have a very different sound from either male choruses or mixed choruses. The timbre of female voices is higher. The white-clad Women’s Chorus, with Holly Allan as accompanist, sang a very contemporary piece by Elizabeth Atkinson, based on a poem by Mother Teresa.

We will write a custom Essay on Variety and Sincerity: Something to Sing About: the Ashland University Spring Choral Concert specifically for you! Get your first paper with 15% OFF Learn More The words were not in the program, but they are very moving. This piece, titled Fruits of a Selfless Heart, recites the fruits of various aspects of a religious life: prayer, faith, love, service, peace, all with a meditative and contemplative serenity. It sounds as though it would make good music to accompany yoga or communion.

The piece from Andrea Chenier was close in harmony, and silky smooth in texture, and moderate in tempo. The more modern piece by Rollo Dillworth, No Rocks A-Crying, was decidedly upbeat and inspiringly vigorous. It was not clear what the song was about (again, the issue of words in the program appears) but it made you want to believe whatever it was. The rhythm encouraged movement and it was one of the pieces that someone might have left humming, since it had a fairly clear melody.

Another very current offering was the Eric Whitacre piece based on poetry by Frederico Lorca, called With a Lily in your Hand. The effect that he achieved is very difficult to articulate. It would have been helpful to have these words in the program, since the music is clearly expressing something very specific in the lyrics.

There was a section of the song that was practically like a drum beat, but the effect was achieved entirely with voices. The voices struck notes repeatedly with vigorous attack and quick decay, and it made a remarkable impact.

It would have been helpful to have the words to Walk Together, Children printed in the program. This contemporary gospel song by Moses Hogan was programmatic in the sense of having a driving rhythm, and rather quick-march tempo. One got the impression of children being shepherded on a trail – perhaps fleeing slavery, or sin.

There is no replacement for live music – thank goodness. The singers believe in the music they are singing. The director believes in the music he or she has chosen. The singers tell the story or share a message embedded in the words of the music, using their whole bodies. The difference in experience between live and recorded music is particularly pointed when the concert is choral, because of this whole body involvement. This was a well selected and uplifting afternoon of music, and indeed, something to sing about.