Flood, MG (2016) Women Resisting Terror: Imaginaries of Violence in Algeria (1966–2002). The Journal of North African Studies, 22 (1). pp. 109-131. ISSN 1743-9345

[thumbnail of JNAS 22-7-16.pdf]
JNAS 22-7-16.pdf - Accepted Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial.

Download (184kB) | Preview


This article charts the roles and representations of Algerian Women as both agents and victims of violence in the War of Independence (1956–1962) and the Algerian Civil War of the 1990s in which the role of women emerged as a significant site of ideological, religious, and political struggle. This vision of Algerian Women, caught between models of participation and passivity, can be located within a long imaginary of Algerian women as exposed to colonial, patriarchal, state, or terrorist violence, but also possessing fortitude and resilience in the face of conflict. I examine the model of female agency through the figure of the bomb carrier in Gillo Pontecorvo’s The Battle of Algiers (1966), illuminating the gap between the freedom depicted, and promised, and the reality of women’s experience after the war. I then turn to the Algerian Civil War, considering one of the most enduring photographs to emerge from the conflict, Hocine Zaourar’s La Madone de Benthala (1997), an image that inscribes a quasi-universal image of female victimhood. Finally, an exploration of Yamina Bachir-Chouikh’s Rachida (2002) reveals a more complex staging of female resistance in times of terror. The film offers a delicate exploration of the emotional and psychological effects of political and symbolic violence, which troubles a more usual imaginary of Algerian women as noble, suffering, and endlessly resistant or resilient figures.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in The Journal of North African Studies on 9 September 2016, available online http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13629387.2016.1229184
Uncontrolled Keywords: terrorism, Algerian women, The Battle of Algiers, Rachida, La Madone de Benthala, Algerian Civil War, Algerian cinema
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare > HV6431 Terrorism
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1993 Motion Pictures
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Humanities
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 13 Sep 2016 14:03
Last Modified: 08 Apr 2019 11:17
URI: https://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/2181

Actions (login required)

View Item
View Item