Women in Struggle

A film by Buthina Canaan Khoury

Palestine | 2004 | 56 minutes | Color | DVD | Arabic | Subtitled | Order No. 05885


WOMEN IN STRUGGLE presents rare testimony from four female Palestinian ex-detainees who disclose their experiences during their years of imprisonment in Israeli jails and the effect it has had on their present lives and future outlooks. Once content in their lives as sisters, wives and mothers, each of the women became active members for the national fight for Palestinian independence, but their “crimes” differed markedly–one woman was detained in a peaceful protest while another was arrested for her participation in a bombing.

Their painful recollections provide a fascinating personal perspective on their motives for political involvement, reveal their struggles in prison, and define the difficulties they have faced readjusting to life in Palestinian society. Though the women are now free, they continue to feel imprisoned by the current climate of the Intifada, by the “war on terror” and by the recently built “security” wall. With horrifying stories of torture suffered while in Israeli detention, the film brings to the forefront the hot-button issue of human rights abuses in prisons—and its particular implications for women prisoners. It also grapples with timely and difficult questions—what politicizes an individual? Are people born to fight, or do their circumstances force them to do so?

Presented without narration, WOMEN IN STRUGGLE does not categorize its subjects as heroes or criminals, instead letting the women’s voices stand on their own to add another layer to the complex discourse on Israel.


  • AMWA Excellence in Media Award
  • Ismaelia Film Fest, Hussam Ali Award& Jury Mention
  • Netherlands Social Forum
  • Docudays, Lebanon
  • Arab Film Festival, Germany
  • Dubai Aljazeera Film Festival, Qatar
  • Dubai Film Festival
  • Cinema e Donne, Florence
  • Canada Palestine Film Festival
  • San Diego Women Film Foundation


Buthina Canaan Khoury

Buthina Canaan Khoury is a Palestinian independent filmmaker who established Majd Production Company in Ramallah city in 2000. The company's main objective is to produce documentaries about various crucial Palestinian issues, focusing on women's social and political problems. Khoury received her Bachelor degree in Filmmaking and Photography from the Massachusetts College of Fine Arts in Boston, Ma. Women in Struggle (2004), Maria's Grotto (2007) and Taste the Revolution (2008).Ms Khoury had won many awards including the silver Muhr at Dubai festival in 2007, and she is currently developing her first feature Green Almond. (07/19).


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