Palestinian women’s agency

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In Civil Resistance and Conflict Transformation, Veronique Dudouet divides responses to oppression into two main analytical categories. The first category refers to conventional actions, including party politics, advocacy or diplomacy, dialogue and negotiations, and litigation. The second category is non-intuitional/contentious actions including: first, nonviolent/unarmed/peaceful resistance through protest and persuasion, non-cooperation, disruptive intervention and creative resistance and second, violent/armed resistance through warfare, terrorist attacks, guerrilla insurgency, protest violence and sabotage. These two sub-categories of resistance operate outside the bounds of conventional political channels and are usually employed by an oppressed minority or disempowered majority by an exclusionary national or foreign actor. In the face of oppression, this essay finds that the Palestinian women deploy these two forms of resistance, which separately, and in combination demonstrate their agency and fulfill what Margaret Archer calls “primacy of practice.” Palestinian women demonstrate a capacity to influence the colonial practices and structures in which they have lived through engaging in unconventional peaceful resistance through Sumud and cultural resistance as well as armed/non-peaceful resistance.