Women of Lebanon

Interviews with Champions for Peace


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About the Book

Despite sixteen years of civil war that left 150,000 dead, 425,000 injured, and nearly a million refugees within their own country, many Lebanese women successfully protected their national heritage and helped to restore order within their society. They formed schools and clinics, preserved historic ruins, and produced art that expressed the anguish and loss of their people.
In this book, 42 Lebanese women from arts and literature, education, government, law, social work, the media, business and medicine discuss the effects of war on their careers and humanitarian efforts, their personal lives and families. Many of these women lost relatives and homes. In spite of such devastation, their stories confirm the power of endurance and also convey the significance of women’s issues within Lebanon. These 42 poignant interviews with educated, successful women reveal their strength and the importance of culture and diversity within Lebanon.

About the Author(s)

Writer Nelda LaTeef is an award winning writer and illustrator. Her published works include Working Women for the 21st Century and The Hunter and the Ebony Tree. A cum laude graduate of Harvard, she lives in Virginia.

Bibliographic Details

Nelda LaTeef
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 291
Bibliographic Info: 42 photos, index
Copyright Date: 2012 [1997]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7279-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1


May Arida, Patron of the Arts      9

Saloua Raouda Choucair, Sculptor      16

Fayrouz, Singer and Actress      23

Georgette Gebara, Choreographer      28

Vénus Khoury-Ghatta, Poet and Novelist      37

Papou Lahoud, Fashion and Costume Designer      42

Houda Al-Naamani, Poet, Painter and Playwright      49

Emily Nasrallah, Novelist      57

Leila Osseirane, Novelist      66

Sabah, Singer and Actress      72

Juliana Seraphim, Painter      77


Raymonde Abou, Educator      87

Leila Badre, Archaeologist and Museum Curator      93

Mariam Ghandour, University Counselor      98

Najla Hamadeh, Professor of Philosophy      103

Nina Jidejian, Historian and Author      108

Hala Salaam Maksoud, Professor of Government      114

Mishka Mojabber, Educator and Poet      121

Latifé Moultaka, Professor of Drama      129

Hilda Nassar, Librarian      135

Lamia Shehadeh, Professor of History      140


Randa Berri, Social Worker      153

Zahra Bissat, Social Worker      159

Mona Haraoui, First Lady of Lebanon      164

Bahia Hariri, Member of Parliament      170

Ilham Hobballah, Ministry of Tourism Official      176

Arlette Jreisatti, Judge      180

Nimat Assad Kanaan, Ministry of Social Affairs Official      190

Nayla Moawad, Member of Parliament      194

Laure Moghaizel, Attorney and Human Rights Leader      203

Anissa Najjar, Social Worker      211

Rabab Sadr-Charafeddine, Social Worker      218


Souade Karout Al-Ashi, Broadcast Journalist      227

Nadia Barrage, Floral and Interior Designer      231

Sonia Beiruti, Journalist and Talk Show Host      236

Nora Joumblatt, Art Gallery Owner      242

May Kahalé, Press Secretary      246

May Menassa, Journalist      251

Rima Said Shehadeh, Interior Designer      258

Ghada Shoujah, Banker      263

MEDICINE      269

Majd Ariss-Timani, Pediatrician      271

Muna Matta-Muallem, Dermatologist      275

Index      281

Book Reviews & Awards

“present[s] a more complete picture of the war than one can get in other works on Lebanon…LaTeef is to be commended”—Middle East Journal; “a lovely collection of poignant interviews”—The Compendium Newsletter.