Huda Sha'arawi

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Huda Sha'arawi (circa 1900)

Huda Sha'arawi or Hoda Sha'rawi (Arabic: هدى شعراوي, ALA-LC: Hudá Sha‘rāwī; 23 June 1879 – 12 December 1947) was a pioneering Egyptian feminist leader, suffragette, nationalist, and founder of the Egyptian Feminist Union.


  • Ladies and Gentlemen, the Arab woman who is equal to the man in duties and obligations will not accept, in the twentieth century, the distinctions between the sexes that the advanced countries have done away with. The Arab woman will not agree to be chained in slavery and to pay for the consequences of men's mistakes with respect to her country's rights and the future of her children. The woman also demands with her loudest voice to be restored her political rights, rights granted to her by the Sharia and dictated to her by the demands of the present. The advanced nations have recognised that the man and the woman are to each other like the brain and heart are to the body; if the balance between these two organs is upset the system of the whole body will be upset. Likewise, if the balance between the two sexes in the nation is upset it will disintegrate and collapse.
    • Speech at the Arab Feminist Conference (1944) in So Here I Am: Speeches by great women to empower and inspire (2019)
  • “The human starts from one. One soul in two bodies. We can’t deny one body and favour another body. As far as my spiritual level of experience is concerned, the woman is the core part of humanity. This truth has been manipulated by culture and community." Huda Sharawi, Women Between Submission & Freedom”[1]
  • “So if the traditions and culture of the Eastern community are blindly compelled to hurt a woman’s dignity, insult and degrade her in the name of cultural unity, then I am ready to burn myself. If it means facing prosecution and rejection to highlight these difficult truths, I intend to vocalize my pain and start a revolution for the silent women who faced centuries of oppression.'[2]
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