Giulia Daniele


Tunisia is widely considered to be the country in which the current round of major upheavals in North Africa and the Middle East began. This paper explores the most prominent instances of women’s activism which have taken place in Tunisia in the time which has followed the revolution of 2011. Through analysis of the principal literature related to the subject and the information gathered as a result of fieldwork conducted in the capital city of Tunis in February 2013, the paper examines the most significant transformations which have arisen from the active participation of women in the uprising. The involvement of women in the demand for changes in Tunisia questions whether women’s political engagement can be seen as an essential asset within Tunisian civil society organizations, and, if it can, this prompts us to go on to consider the implications of this also for the role of international aid funding (with specific reference to the European Union). Overall, the Tunisian uprising can be represented in terms of a remarkable case in which civil society, including the women’s organizations, has played a useful and effective role at a political and social level, ensuring the emergence of a feasible alternative pathway.

Author Biography

Giulia Daniele is currently Research Fellow in Political Science at the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies. After obtaining her Bachelor Degree in International Studies (2005) and Master Degree in International Relations and Human Rights (2007) at the University of Torino (Italy), she completed her Ph.D. in ‘Politics, Human Rights and Sustainability’ under a co-tutelle agreement between the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies (Italy) and the University of Exeter (UK) in April 2012. Since 2005 she has conducted fieldwork researches in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, Israel and Tunisia, focusing on Middle East politics (in particular, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict) and women’s political activism in the MENA region.Her first book is entitled Women, Reconciliation and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict: The Road Not Yet Taken (Routledge, 2014).