• Offered by Centre for Arab and Islamic Studies
  • ANU College ANU College of Arts and Social Sciences
  • Course subject Middle Eastern & Central Asian Studies
  • Areas of interest Cultural Studies, Gender Studies, History, Middle East Studies, Arts
  • Academic career UGRD
  • Course convener
    • Dr Karima Laachir
  • Mode of delivery In Person
  • Offered in First Semester 2023
    See Future Offerings

This course broadly examines the roles played by women in the cultural sphere in modern Iran and the Middle East, where literature, cinema, music, visual and performing arts are inspired by a growing female presence. This is a topical subject that has acquired additional salience in light of the recent changes in the region. As never before, women in the region have to deal with the multiple issues of patriarchy, contested notions of modernity, identity, and authenticity, religion, political and economic participation and artistic expression. The course will focus on the role of women, as novelists, movie directors, and musicians. To introduce students to the region, it also provides background on women’s movements as well as analysis of the socio-political aspects that came to create the modern Middle East. 

The course is made up of 12 weeks of lectures which comprises of two distinct sections: Five sessions will be dedicated to explore women’s cultural contributions to modern Iran, and seven sessions will be dedicated to the other Middle East countries including: Iraq, Lebanon, Syria, Palestine, Saudi Arabia & The Persian Gulf Arab States, Egypt, and Turkey. 

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. identify women’s role in the making of the culture of the Middle East through the works of writers, directors, and musicians, and the complexities of the relationship between women and the arts;
  2. recognize and analyse women’s roles and achievements in the Culture of the Middle East in the last three decades;
  3. know how to select and combine materials from a topic relevant to the role of women in Middle Eastern contemporary culture and present them in a coherent matter in a team environment;
  4. identify the elements shaping modern Middle Eastern culture through the prism of gender relations.

Indicative Assessment

  1. Essay, 3000 words (50) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  2. End of semester examination, 2 hours, 2000 words (40) [LO 1,2,3,4]
  3. Discussion contributions about readings, and in-class feedback (10) [LO 1,2,4]

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130 hours of total student learning time made up from

a) 36 hours of contact over 12 weeks: 24 hours of lectures and 12 hours of tutorials; and

b) 94 hours of independent student research, reading and writing 

Inherent Requirements

Not applicable

Requisite and Incompatibility

You are not able to enrol in this course if you have previously completed GEND2107, GEND3022, MEAS2107

Prescribed Texts

All Reading Material are listed in the course guide and also posted on Wattle in the reading list.

Preliminary Reading

The reading list is in the course guide and posted on wattle for each week.


Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.  

Commonwealth Support (CSP) Students
If you have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). More information about your student contribution amount for each course at Fees

Student Contribution Band:
Unit value:
6 units

If you are a domestic graduate coursework student with a Domestic Tuition Fee (DTF) place or international student you will be required to pay course tuition fees (see below). Course tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.

Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.

6.00 0.12500
Domestic fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $3960
International fee paying students
Year Fee
2023 $5100
Note: Please note that fee information is for current year only.

Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

The list of offerings for future years is indicative only.
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.

First Semester

Class number Class start date Last day to enrol Census date Class end date Mode Of Delivery Class Summary
4448 20 Feb 2023 27 Feb 2023 31 Mar 2023 26 May 2023 Online View

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