As one of the few professional women cartoonists in the Middle East, Egypt’s Doaa Eladl has been the target of threats from fundamentalists and even a lawsuit for blasphemy. Undeterred, she has just released a new book of cartoons dedicated to women. In a recent interview with Channel 4 in the UK, she said the backlash has only served to convince her that she has found her vocation.
Eladl has been publishing cartoons for ten years, encompassing the fall of Hosni Mubarak and the tumultuous era that followed for Egypt. Although she certainly does cover politics in general, she told Channel 4 that she feels a particular responsibility to highlight issues of women’s rights that are rarely addressed in the work of other cartoonists. After all, she says, “the women’s causes depicted in my cartoons are an integral part of me as I faced many of these situations myself.”
Eladl mainly works for the Egyptian newspaper Al Masry Al Youm, but also posts a selection of internationally-focused work on Cartoon Movement. In her new book Fifty Cartoons and More on Women, she wanted to encompass both the obvious issues affecting women in Egypt and around the world, such as basic rights to education and bodily integrity, and the issues that may seem less pressing or that are not publicly discussed as often such as “the attitude people might have for infertile women…[or] what society thinks of divorced, overweight or dark-skinned women.”
Watch her interview with Channel 4 below:
Meet the female cartoonist tackling some of Egypt’s most taboo subjects. pic.twitter.com/boiN8svUHC
— Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) August 11, 2017
Doaa Eladl was also featured in CBLDF’s book She Changed Comics, and in our past news coverage here:
Contributing Editor Maren Williams is a reference librarian who enjoys free speech and rescue dogs.