Reality and Representation of Algerian Women: The Complex Dynamic of Heroines and Repressed Women
Since the Algerian war for independence against the French in the 1950s, the roles of Algerian women have been shifting over the past five decades. During the war for independence, women found themselves in positions of power, where their military assistance was necessary to win the war. However, once independence was gained in 1962, women were once again forced into the predetermined roles of wives and mothers. Over the next four decades, the situation in Algeria began to improve as the educational and work opportunities for women increased. After a setback in the 1990s, during Algeria's civil war, Algerian women have continued to make advances in society and are embracing the liberties that accompany a modernizing state. This study examines the development of women's societal positions in Algeria and the different roles that women have played during important events in Algeria's history. Through the application of feminist theory and through the use of film, this study assesses the obstacles that Algerian women have faced in their efforts to gain liberation and respect.