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Dana Bakdounis and the Uprising of Women in the Arab World

Like hundreds of young women and men all across the Arab world and beyond, Dana Bakdounis, posted her photo to the online campaign, The Uprising of Women in the Arab World’s Facebook page. Holding her passport and a hand-written message along with a defying stare on her unveiled face, she boldly states: “I’m with the uprising of women in the Arab world because for 20 years I was not allowed to feel wind in my hair and body.” But on the morning of October 26, 2012, Facebook removed Dana’s photo and has blocked the administrator of the Facebook group who posted the photo from posting anything for 24 hours. The picture was taken down by Facebook because the social network had received complaints. The photo was allegedly reported as being “insulting.”

The Administrators of the Facebook page have put together the following statement regarding the incident:

“It is a regrettable matter that we still have to call on some to read before they attack, and to understand what they read before they utter smutty words, angry calls and statements of hatred for which the uprising was created!

This page has presented the pictures of the veiled and face-veiled women equally as the pictures of the unveiled, yet insolence or memory loss takes some to the point of denying this! Some even extend the insulting attack by accusing the page of encouraging the removal of the veil even though many have spoken in their pictures of their pride in their veil.

Yet more hurtful, insolent blatant hatred takes some to the point of accusing us of dwarfing women and their issues with emphasis on removal of the veil, while it was they who attacked pictures of one young woman who had removed the veil, and ignored the pictures of many who spoke of their rights regarding nationality, education, marriage, work, inheritance, maternal leave and protection from sexual abuse, rape, early marriage, battery and circumcision.

It is regrettable to witness these comments continue by some without thinking before they write them. It is also regrettable to witness the obscene insults stated by those claiming strength of belief and morals.
Thank you to all those who uprise with us! And thank you to all those who fight us with maliciousness and hatred for you prove to us each day the necessity of this uprising!
We will persist, we will endure.”

To read more, see photos and reactions to the story, the Young Feminist Wire’s has prepared a Storify story. Read it here:

8 thoughts on “Dana Bakdounis and the Uprising of Women in the Arab World”

  1. Dana says:

    Shame on Facebook!

  2. alina says:


  3. Fred says:

    Ah yes, the ‘free’ world censors the speech of all. You are only free to speak if it complies with the religious and politically minded opinions of the ‘bound’.

  4. I think this message is so powerful, and the fact that Facebook has taken down the picture has only increased the publicity and therefore the broadcasting of this important message throughout the world!

  5. Richard says:

    I think they removed it by accident because of all the death threats and obscene language directed at Dana. They say they’ve done this more than once by accident. I don’t believe we should blame Facebook.

    Well done to her. It’s very brave but necessary for progress.

  6. Cinder Chutes says:

    Just posted photo on my Facebook Timeline. Good luck everyone. Something has to be done to Facebook. Free expression in America.

    1. Cinder Chutes says:

      Dana’s photo also went to my News Feed.

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