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Menzel Bouzaiene: Women mobilize against social exclusion

« Keep quiet! » several men ordered a fellow sit-inner when she tried to speak up during a gathering. Such a scene is common in Menzel Bouzaiene, governorate Sidi Bouzid. For in spite of their capacity to mobilize, women are essentially excluded from public space and marginalized in social movements. Conscious of the double discrimination they face, 32 women decided to launch their own protest called « Manich Sekta », I will not keep quiet, to make their voices heard. In the summer’s blazing heat, they invited us to learn about their struggle for work, dignity, and social inclusion.

Revolution, My Love

On 17 December 2010, a young Tunisian in Sidi Bouzid sets himself ablaze. One by one, the country’s regions rise up. On 14 January 2011, after 23 years of dictatorship, Ben Ali leaves the country. Like so many other Tunisians, Karim Rmadi, Olfa Lamloum, Ghassen Amami and Selim Kharrat decide to return home after many years abroad. Four stories that tell of revolutionary fervor, the challenges of transition, and an unshakable faith in the future.

Four Years After the Kasbah Sit-Ins – Taking Stock of a Revolutionary Mission Confiscated

If major political forces succeeded in controlling the Kasbah, it was largely due to inadequate management on the part of the youth who were the driving force of the occupation. Indeed, confusion and personal conflicts were factors in the movement’s extinction. By now many participants have had time to ruminate these errors. What remains is to shed led upon the movement’s successes. «Through the sit-ins we imposed an ethics threshold which all political parties had to observe, » Azyz Amami told Nawaat; the youth who took part in the movement demonstrated extreme democratic creativity that surpassed old forms of power.

Report: In Sidi Bouzid, abstention is the voice of the Voiceless

In Bouzaiéne, one week after the legislative elections, residents are in mourning. Grieving their revolt, they speak only of disappointment. Here, nothing has changed, neither the high rate of unemployment, nor the shortage of water, nor the loss of dignity. For the residents of Bouzaiéne, the democratic transition has not reached Sidi Bouzid. Slogans like «anti-power» and «anti-system» freshly spray-painted onto walls throughout the city liberate the suppressed voices of the Voiceless.