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Modernization and women inTunusia : an analysis through selected films

Coşkun, Çiçek
This study analyzes the representation of women and modernization in Tunisian society by looking at Tunisian films produced in Tunisia after 1980. Study aims to develop a new concept to understand modernization process of women in a non-western, Muslim, and North African society through representations in films. Women’s modernization process has been analyzed through the qualitative analyses of five Tunisian films by focusing on conceptualization of women issue as one of the main elements of Tunisian modernization. More presicely, the study examines stages of women’s modernization on the one side, and representation of this process in films on the other. In conclusion, I argue that examining written literature alone is not enough to understand women’s modernization process in a non-western society. Expansion of modernization is not rapid and equal in the Tunisian society. If taking place in the public sphere, having a paid job and having education are taken as the indicators of women’s modernization, it is seen that lower class women face with problems in every stage of Tunisian modernization. At that point, attending to visual sources like cinema which has the ability to reflect the society can give us convenient information about this process.