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WIPCAD Lecture Series: Women in Saudi Arabia: Intersections of gender, ethnicity and religion

Prof. Dr. Anna Odrowaz-Coates - M. Grzegorzewska Academy of Special Education, Warsaw

Prof. Dr. Anna Odrowaz-Coates will present her research in Saudi-Arabia, conducted over the course of two years. She will refer to her paper published in 2015 “A gated community as a “soft” and gendered total institution”. The case study presented is based on ethnographic materials collated inside a Western, gated, militarized and isolated compound, situated outside Ta’if, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). The article explores not only the implications of Goffman’s total institution (TI) model in this new setting, but it also discovers a new dimension of gender–power relations in the context of a specific gated community. It focuses on the symbolic exchanges in and outside the walls, with a specific focus on gender agenda. It advances the TI concept towards a ‘softer’ and yet still ‘total’ type of institution, where the gender polarity in and outside the compound sets a unique organizational structure. The idea of ‘gender adjustment’ and the soft model of total institution (where soft indicates the ambiguity of the gate and its symbolic dimension) are the main theoretical contributions.

Currently Prof. Dr. Anna Odrowaz-Coates is employed as an associate professor at the Social Pedagogy Department at M. Grzegorzewska Academy of Special Education in Warsaw. Her research focuses on social inequalities, in particular ethnic and gender issues, reproduction of social systems through education and women's position in contemporary societies. Her doctoral thesis was based on a 4-year study of women employed by the mass media and how women are portrayed by the mass media in Poland and in Italy. This was followed by a study of migration to the UK from the EU accession states. Recent research has included an in-depth study of women in the Polish and British militaries and a 2-year anthropological field study of women and culture in Saudi Arabia.

“Women in Saudi Arabia: Intersections of gender, ethnicity and religion

Prof. Dr. Anna Odrowaz-Coates

Venue: University of Potsdam, Campus Griebnitzsee, House 7, Room 227

Date: 14 March 2017

Time: 14 - 16 c.t.

WIPCAD Lecture Series