Norms and Gender Discrimination in the Arab World by Adel SZ Abadeer

By Adel SZ Abadeer

Abadeer contains casual norms resembling faith, mores, myths, taboos, codes-of-conduct, favourite legislation, and traditions, into the constitution of formal principles (e.g., polity, judiciary, legislation, and the enforcement of law), which in flip impression the governance of the transactions.

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Moreover, the Arab world ranked last compared to other regions in the world in economic participation and opportunity index. 5. 5 Global Gender Gap Index: Economic Participation and Opportunity Index, Regional Performance, 2014 (%). Source : Data collected from Global Gender Gap Report (2014). Geneva, Switzerland. 18 ● Norms and Gender Discrimination in the Arab World list, since Israel’s index is 64 percent; much higher than the region’s index of 42%). The report also shows that 11 Arab countries are among the bottom 15 countries in the ranking of labor force participation rate gap (the other countries are Pakistan, Iran, India, and Turkey), 14 Arab countries are among the bottom 17 countries in terms of estimated earned income gap (the other countries are Iran, Pakistan, and India), and 10 Arab countries were among the bottom 12 countries in the ratio of women to men in legislators, senior officials and managers (the other countries are Pakistan, and Bangladesh) (Global Gender Gap Report 2014).

This may explain the inf luence and distribution of certain ingrained norms in peoples’ and societies’ image of the world. This is especially true for public images that are shared by members of the ruling/dominant group, for example, the image regarding gender relations and roles in gender-discriminating societies (Boulding 1956). Messages that align with existing images of the world in a given society are welcomed, while messages that oppose the existing societal image are met with strong resistance and/or rejection.

According to Crawford and Ostrom, “An institution . . is a regular behavior pattern sustained by mutual expectations about the actions that others will take . . The grounds for looking at institutions as norms rest on an assumption that many observed patterns of interaction are based on the shared perceptions among a group of individuals of proper and improper behavior in particular situations”(1995: 583). Institutions serve the interest of those who intentionally, or unintentionally, win bargaining power.

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