On the Kurdish Womens Movement

The KJB (Koma Jinên Bilind, translated as the High Women’s Council) is an umbrella organization of Kurdish women’s organisations. Their website features an article, The Kurdistan Women’s Liberation Movement for a Universal Women’s Struggle, which explains the history and expansion of the Kurdish women’s movement.

Abdullah Ocalan’s booklet, Liberating Life: Women’s Revolution is available as a pdf and is an essential read. Here he analyses the centrality of women’s liberation from patriarchy in the struggle for a fully liberated society.

VIDEO: Dilar Dirik, Stateless Democracy: How the Kurdish Women Movement Liberated Democracy from the State(Paper given at the New World Summit in Brussels, 21 October 2014).

Kobane: the struggle of Kurdish women against Islamic State is a useful article published in Open Democracy in October 2014 on the involvement of Kurdish women in the liberation of Rojava and the fight against ISIS.

Margaret Owen reports back following her visit to Rojava in December 2013. Her article, Gender, justice and an emerging nation: My impressions of Rojava, was published in Ceasefire Magazine soon afterwards.

Mary Davis, trade unionist and academic, spent 10 days visiting women’s groups in northern Kurdistan (Turkey) in July 2012 as part of a delegation organised by CENI.

Dilar Dirik’s 29 October article for Al Jazeera, Western fascination with ‘badass’ Kurdish women, goes beyond the western media’s orientalising narrative of Kurdish women fighters in the YPJ to examine the history of women resistance fighters and their place in the PKK.

CENI – Kurdish Women’s Office for Peace, based in Germany, released this Dossier on the Assassination of Three Female Kurdish Politicians in Paris following the assassination of Sakine Cansiz, an icon of the Kurdish struggle for liberation, and two more of her activist colleagues. They were killed in broad daylight in the centre of Paris in early January 2013, just weeks after peace talks between the Turkish government and the PKK were announced.

Roj Women’s Association, based in the UK, published this report in May 2012 which looks at state violence toward women human rights defenders in Turkey: A Woman’s Struggle: Using Gender Lenses to Understand the Plight of Women Human Rights Defenders in Kurdish Regions of Turkey