Despite playing a significant role in the revolution last year, Libyan women are now struggling to stay relevant, retain positions of power or influence, and further their agenda:
Each setback—from a woman presenter who, hosting a ceremony in August before the new parliament, was forced off the podium because her head wasn’t covered, to a militia in Benghazi harassing a women’s conference—prompts more women to return to private life. That’s a far cry from the heady days following the revolution when women believed they would gain widespread acceptance because of their significant roles in the uprising, from the perilous smuggling of guns and medicines to organizing media outreach overseas.
Now it seems that the committee being formed to write Libya’s new constitution will likely contain only a very few women instead of the 20 it should contain. People may have rebelled against an oppressive government, but not enough people are rebelling against an oppressive patriarchy.