Women's rights in Saudi Arabia are a central theme in media and governmental discourse about the country. This talk analyzes the successive Saudi governments' strategic uses of women's rights and the ongoing transformations of femininity norms in Saudi society. What do Saudi women's lifestyles tell us about power relations between the state and its subjects, women and their relatives, citizens and migrants?
The sociologist Dr. Amélie Le Renard (CNRS, Paris) has been researching about gender, class and race in cities of the Arabian Peninsula since more than a decade. Among her publications are Femmes et espaces publics en Arabie Saoudite (Dalloz, Paris, 2011), which was published in Arabic by the Arab Network for Research and Publishing in 2013 and adapted in English under the title A Society of Young Women: Opportunities of Place, Power and Reform (Stanford University Press, 2014). Her most recent publications are a monograph entitled Western Privilege. Work, Intimacy and Postcolonial Hierarchies in Dubai (Stanford University Press, 2021) and a collaborative work with the two anthropologists Ahmed Kanna and Neha Vora titled Beyond Exception. New Interpretations of the Arabian Peninsula, published by Cornell University Press in 2020.