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Mittwoch, 24.04.2024


Shahbag movement of Bangladesh and women’s image in the identity battle.

16:00 - 18:00 Uhr
online, https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJYlf-GtpjMpHtWPsNpweRXmY1dAwGCc-vVr

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Eintritt / Kosten: Keine


Dr. Nasrin Khandoker

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In Bangladesh, the Shahbag Movement 2013 started at noon on the 5th of February 2013 to protest against the verdict of life imprisonment of Abdul Quader Molla, one of the accused war criminals in the 1971 War of Independence. Online Bengali nationalist activists organised a demonstration in Shahbag Square in Dhaka, the capital city, to protest against the verdict and demand capital punishment instead. This demonstration gathered thousands of protesters, continuing for almost three months and eventually becoming a top news story—even in the international media, which compared Shahbag Square to Tahrir Square (Boone and Haque, 2013). The comprehensive history of the Shahbag protest is intertwined with Bangladesh’s colonial, post-colonial, and nationalist development of Bengali and Muslim identities. The heated debate that became salient during the Shahbag movement was the atheist versus religious or Bengali versus Muslim identities, which have historically been constructed as a binary in Bangladeshi political discourse. This binary opposition that strongly exists in the political discourse often becomes visible in the form of dress codes and the appearances of women. It also became a crucial weapon of identity war, rooted in masculine political narratives. Women and their appearances were one of the sensational topics around the Shahbag movement, particularly in the online sphere. In this lecture, as an active participant, ethnographic observer, and researcher, I will discuss how the images of women are used as a weapon for and against the protest.

Bio: Dr Nasrin Khandoker is a Postdoctoral Researcher in the Sustainable Alliances Against Anti-Muslim Hatred (SALAAM) project, at the University of Limerick. Before that, she was a Post-doctoral Fellow in the GBV-MIG project at NUIG and an associate professor in the Department of Anthropology, Jahangirnagar University. In addition to a Master's degree from the Department of Anthropology, Jahangirnagar University, she was awarded a MA in Gender Studies from Central European University, Hungary, in 2014. She received a Wenner-Gren Wadsworth fellowship from US and John and Pat Hume scholarship from Maynooth University for her PhD, awarded in 2021.


Unit for Peace and Conflict Studies