Precarious Labour, Occupied Lands: The Checkpoint Economy and the Proletarianization of Palestinian Women.

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Mays Abdel Aziz


The thesis explores the phenomena of the proletarianization of Palestinian women and their experiences as migrant workers in Israel. Proletarianization refers to the separation of producers from the land they utilize for household subsistence and transforming them into wage labourers, hence integrating them into the capitalist system of production. Within this political economy framework, it will become clear that we are not only exploring a capitalist context, but most distinctly the economics of occupation. The assignment of these women to a separate ethnic group within Israel, but also to a separate economic group of "guest" workers who went back to their homes in Palestine at the end of the day had deep implications on both the economies and the structures of Palestinian and Israeli societies. This mostly unprecedented separation of the Palestinian woman from her land and family disturbed the traditional structure of the Palestinian private household. I will also explore how this phenomenon transformed these women and to what extent it transformed their gender roles, "liberated" them from patriarchy, and where it situated them in the nationalistic struggle against occupation.

Article Details

Session I: Prisons
Author Biography

Mays Abdel Aziz, Department of Political Studies

Moderator: Dr. Pam Dickey Young, Religious Studies

Faculty Supporter: Dr. Margaret Little