Sunday, March 3, 2013

Qatari Women: Family life vs. Work

Marriage in Qatar is a serious matter that is intertwined with honor. Women’s place is upheld in the Qatari society by protecting the women’s reputation and thus, protecting the family name.  The common ideology that was circled around in Qatar, until very recently, was that a woman must marry in order to fulfill her role in the society, and her role in leading a normal life.

Women’s role becomes institutionalized with in the nuclear family. A Qatari woman who wants to become successful has to prove herself successful in a family life before she is considered to be successful at work.
Women in Qatar have to take on the role of establishing a family and taking care of it. Any shortness in fulfilling that role means that something is wrong with the woman. Qatari women can never be breadwinners in the society, as the man has to provide for everything. Breadwinner is a term that describes the tradition of the man figure providing for his family. If the woman works then that’s her prerogative and she may choose to deal with her income however she’d like. She can spend it on her children or herself, but the children have to be living a well-provided life from the father’s income.  

Women take on the role of a working individual in order tofill their time. That in itself is seen as an accomplishment as instead of sitting home alone, women choose to fill their time by doing work. However, first and for most the work they do can be interrupted by any of a working mother’s children’s demands. If the child calls his mother to pick him up from school early, the mother has to dismiss her work and pick up her child. Therefor, Qatari women are on a constant working shift, from their real work hours to the second shift they have at home running the household.

The video I’m sharing for this blog is a statement about a happy Qatari woman. Analyzing it shows that there’s no husband in the picture, only kids. However, including kids indicates the presence of a husband at some point. The short film couldn’t have been done with out showing the complete life of the woman. The woman’s life is complete by having a perfect house life, indicated by the happiness of her children, and a perfect workspace.

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