This paper explores the status of women in Lebanon especially considering the many voices that express their concerns over gender-based human rights violations in the Arab world. The Middle East is the usual suspect when it comes to the protection of human rights and gender inequality…
Indeed, the status of women in Lebanon is pathetic considering the widespread human rights violations against women in Lebanon. Although women in Lebanon are strongly opposed to their status within the Lebanese environment and society, they lack a voice that would champion for their rights especially considering the brutality and male dominance within the Lebanese cultural framework (Nadya). From a historical perspective, Lebanon has come a long way since her independence in 1943 from the French colonial powers. Originally established as a mandate of the French, Lebanon has experienced her fair share of civil wars especially in the 1970s and 1980s when the nation was forced to sign the Taif Peace Accord to end the violence (Zaatari). However, this was not before the Lebanese government invited the Syrian forces to help in the peacekeeping mission (Nadya). With Israeli constant invasion in Lebanon, it is worthy to note than Lebanon has suffered various attacks particularly in 1976 and 1982 (Nazir and Tomppert 22). This means that the constitution states one thing while the practice on the ground is another different phenomenon. Perhaps the bizarre phenomenon with the Lebanese constitution is that while it guarantees gender equality, no explicit article within the constitution that actually protects the Lebanese women against discrimination (Damon and Hume). A classic example of this is that fathers can pass citizenship to their children through birth as long as they become Lebanese citizens. However, the situation is slightly different when it comes to foreign women married to Lebanese men in whereby their children are not considered part of the society. Such harsh judgments based on gender are increasingly affecting the Lebanese women they need full participation in the society just as any other women across the globe (Zaatari). Undoubtedly, the Arab world is one of the most stringent patriarchal societies that incorporate gender roles in their key decisions with women falling victims to the harsh male judgments (Zaatari). Lebanon is indeed one of the Arab countries with about fifteen religious factions hence necessitating the institution of personal statute codes that govern the Lebanese families (Nadya). This means that the protection of the Lebanese women is not explicit and conclusive enough but instead, it is guided by the religion a particular woman hails from. While such discriminatory laws may protect some Lebanese women, many of them usually become victims of circumstances merely because their religious factions do not pay high regards to gender issues especially those pertaining to women (Khalaf). ...
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