This paper examines the pre and post January 25th political dynamics in Egypt, how these have affected the role of women in the private, public and political spheres. It analyzes the dynamics of the development of Egyptian women’s organizations, and the extent to which these may develop into an Egyptian feminist movement. An overview of historical, political, and social contexts of the role of Egyptian women’s organizations will provide an understanding of their main accomplishments from Nasser to Mubarak. The study shows how the early women’s organizations were directly linked with the ruling authorities and how these have added to the authoritarian structure of the regime. The paper moves to analyze how women’s organizations have later evolved into more independent organizations, how they have influenced independent women activists, who have positioned themselves against the authoritarian power structure of the Egyptian political system. The paper finally assesses the extent to which women’s rights are going to be protected or rolled back under the rule of the military and later the Islamists in the post-Mubarak era.

Author Biography

Nadine Sika is an Assistant Professor of political science at the American University in Cairo. Her research focuses on Comparative Politics in the Arab World. Yasmin Khodary received her Ph.D. in 2011 from Cairo University. She is the Governance program coordinator in the UNDP Social Contract Center. Her research concentrates on multiple areas of good governance and gender in the development projects or the public sphere.