Sister of Man = Brother of Woman.
Sister of ManAn-Nahar takes a stand
Today, in terms of female empowerment, Lebanon is viewed as one of the most forward-thinking of all the Arab countries. But the fact is, while women may wear the clothes they like, work and drive, deep-rooted patriarchy still exists –from citizenship rights that favour men to the manner in which women are complemented for their success. So much so, that the ultimate compliment given to successful women in Arabic is “Sister of Man” – which credits their achievements to men. On Women’s Day, An-Nahar decided to take a stand for Arab women by flipping the so-called compliment to make a point.
A Backhanded Compliment, Backhanded
When Joyce Azzam, the first Lebanese woman to climb Mount Everest, reflected on the worst compliment she’d ever received for her achievement: “You have the body of a woman, but the brain of a man.” An-Nahar challenged the patriarchal phrase ‘Sister of Women’, and returned the compliment ‘Brother of Woman’ live on air. As the compliment was then shared with basketball legends Fadi El Khatibm and fellow TV personalities, the debate was ignited.
By turning their newspaper into a protest poster, An-Nahar empowered women to be heard. As the debate grew, celebrities, successful women and politicians came forward and joined the movement - committed to ditching the ‘compliment’ for good.