Comics in Cairo Metro Stations Join Campaign Against Sexual Harassment

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ArabLit & ArabLit Quarterly

Sexual harrassment has been one of the signature themes of twenty-first-century Cairo comics:

Taken from Facebook. Taken from Facebook.

There is Deena Mohamed’s Qahera, which recently won “Best Digital Comic” at the inagural CairoComix Festival last month. In Qahera, a”visibly Muslim” female superhero beats back the city’s harrassers. There’s also Shakmagia (Jewelry Box) magazine, published by the Nazra Center for Women’s Studies, which focused its launch issue around sexual harrassment and sexual violence.

Other anti-sexual-harrassment superheros include Dostour’sSuper Makh and the “Asa7be Man,” whose slogan is: “Be a man and protect her instead of harassing her.”

Egypt’s main comics magazine for adults, TokTok, has also featured commentary on sexual harrassment. Even Cairo’s first full-length graphic novel, Magdy al-Shafee’s Metro, depicted sexual harrassment. This focus on harrassment indicates both the scope of the problem and a shared feeling that something can be done to change attitudes, particularly through a visual storytelling medium…

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