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Tenth Episode: Youth Creativity – Feminist Studies

The lawyer, Heba Al Danaf stated, within “a youth creativity” radio program in its tenth episode, that custody is a basic right; it is based on its greatest interest for kids. Then she added that there are many studies emphasised that the greatest interest is achieved by the mother, not the father(man).

It is worth noting that in this episode two research papers were discussed. The first was written by the researcher Mrs Yasmeen Al-Dreamly. On her paper she discussed the Observance of the Personal Status Law in the interest of the mother of her child at the age of custody.

On the other hand, the second paper by the researcher Sahar Lobad. On her paper she talked about the role of feminist studies in shaping the feminist consciousness. It is worth saying that these papers were part of the Young Gender- Equality Research Chapter’s project, which is carried out by Pal-Think for Strategic Studies and funded by the Government of Canada.

Al-Danaf also pointed out that the first paper came after the researcher’s personal experience with her child and wanted to highlight the suffering of women in relation to child custody and to show the forms of discrimination in the law in relation to the custody law between men and women.

Mrs. Yasmeen said that the articles on custody under the Personal Status Law were linked to service and care without taking on other matters, such as the psychological and emotional aspect, which was more important.

As for the second paper, Mrs. Heba said that this paper examines the role of women scholars in shaping women’s awareness. After that, she emphasized that this paper is really an important one. Then added that it should be considered as a a reference in specialized studies.

In turn, the researcher Yasmeen Aldremley said that her paper highlights the need to find solutions to give effect to the Palestinian Children’s Act and to take into account its best interests in the sharia courts in order to achieve the principle of equality and non-discrimination between boys and girls in custody cases. 

Then she pointed out that the paper also aims to identify the Personal Status Laws in force in the Gaza Strip and the importance of raising the age of custody by taking into account the best interests of the child.

Mrs Aldreamly stressed that the judge had discretion to raise the age of custody of boys from 7 to 9 and girls from 9 to 11. Then she further emphasized that this age was insufficient for a child to grow because of child’s need to his/ her mother, in accordance with the law.

The paper also reviewed several examples of divorced mothers who had suffered and their children because of the Custody Act.

On the other hand, the researcher, Ms. Shar Lobad identified feminism as a set of intellectual and philosophical perceptions that seek to understand the roots and causes of the distinction between men and women, to improve the situation of women and increase their chances in all areas.

She also explained that women’s studies are diverse, including research papers, policy papers and position papers. As well as, fact sheets.

Ms Sahar further noted that all feminist research shares three basic principles. Firstly, female research methodologies adopt that male-female structure constitutes all aspects of our social world and recognize that this structure (a way of organizing society) weakens the status of women. Secondly, feminist research builds evidence with the participation of women and girls. Finally, feminist research builds the ways in which the dynamics of gender inequality intersect with other forms of social inequality such as age, religion, race, disability, class.

She also emphasized the role of women’s writings, particularly research papers, in shaping Palestinian feminist consciousness.

As for the types of Palestinian feminist research literature, Ms Lobad said that there are academic writings from universities such as journals and university conferences, community writings from civil society institutions, and writings from studies centres.

She continued that having a high culture, having the right methodology and research tools, and being aware of legal references are the most important things to write a research paper. 

The paper recommended that a specialized periodical should be published for women’s written research papers in Palestine.

“The designations employed and the representation of material in this program do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Government of Canada.”

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