Without a doubt, a society that encourages women to practice self-defense just to feel comfortable strolling down the street is a society that refuses to acknowledge that harassment rates are on the rise. It goes without saying, women should feel safe walking alone without having to peek behind them or be concerned about someone looking at them or following them. In the past few years, The Middle East has been witnessing a significant rise in harassment rates. This is a major issue in the Arab World, as more women are subjected to violent confrontations that put their lives in jeopardy.
It’s awful that we’re teaching women to always be attentive and aware of their surroundings when the remedy is as simple as halting males and educating them about sexual harassment and consent. Nonetheless, Egypt has been implementing and enacting stricter laws that might result in years of imprisonment. In light of this, a variety of initiatives and workshops have been developed for women to learn how to deal with such encounters as well as the trauma that often follows.
The Al-Sennari Archaeological House will host a session for girls and women on December 19 called “Self-defense Techniques with Art Therapy to Release Trauma.” The session will primarily focus on a new method known as “window,” which emphasizes women’s voice, eye gazing, body language, personal boundaries, perception, focus, and self-awareness, as well as physical exercises and relaxation techniques. All of this is done to instill the belief that women are capable of dealing with such situations. Also, the workshop will teach ways to avoid risky situations and what to do if they occur, with the goal of redefining personal boundaries. In addition, Art therapy will also be used to alleviate psychological stress and a variety of life traumas.
What, then, is the significance of self-defense techniques?
This country is going through a difficult time, but there may be a way out, and awareness and education will triumph one day. In light of what’s happening, women must be aware of their rights and know what to do in potentially traumatic situations as the government continues to enact new laws and imprison more harassers. Consequently, knowing some level of self-defense and being aware is unfortunately required on Egyptian streets.
Therefore, self-defense creates the notion that women are saving themselves and are not weak or inferior to men in any manner. Knowing how to deal with such situations is essential for their well-being and mental health.
In reality, more workshops and campaigns for men are needed to educate them on what is and is not acceptable when it comes to how they treat women in their homes and on the streets. However, for the time being, and until the government decides to take a more active role on this issue, additional workshops for women are needed to assist them in coping with their traumatic experiences.
The traditional notion that Egyptian and Middle Eastern women must rely on outside intervention to save them from oppression diminishes the strength of women who are willing to resist social injustices. They are strong enough and equal to males in many aspects, as they are the cornerstones of society, which would crumble without their significant and valuable contributions.