1906 First Women

Labibah Hashim: Founder of the Fatat al-Sharq periodical

Labibah Hashim (1882-1952) founded Fatat al-Sharq in 1906. The monthly periodical was published from 1906-1929, with some sources dating its first issue back to 1900 1 . The publication advocated for women’s liberation, and their right to education and political participation. Hashim was also known for the articles she wrote engaging in dialogues and disputes with male writers.2

Hashim wrote a number of works of fiction, including her novel Qalb al-Rajul (The Heart of Man), which some, like Mohammad Youssef Najm, considered entirely dedicated to the defense of the woman 3, while others like Yumna Al ‘id considered it rather a love story that addresses the fate of the victims of the sectarian strife of 1860.4 Others still, like Jūzīf Zaydān considered the novel “a remarkable step forward in women’s fiction” with regards to character development 5.


"دورية فتاة الشرق,” Women and Memory Forum, Website, partially available at: http://www.wmf.org.eg/publication/%D9%81%D8%AA%D8%A7%D8%A9-%D8%A7%D9%84%D8%B4%D8%B1%D9%82/ (last accessed 6 March 2020).

Radwa Ashour, Ferial Ghazoul, Hasna Reda-Mekdashi, Arab Women Writers: A Critical Reference Guide 1873-1999, 2008.

Jūzīf Zaydān, Arab Women Novelists: The Formative Years and Beyond, Albany, State University of New York Press, Albany, 1995.

Emily Ibrahim Fares, الحركة النسائية اللبنانية, Beirut, Dar al-Thakafah.

Jamila Amin Hussein, المرأة في الرواية اللبنانية المعاصرة (١٨٩٩-٢٠٠٩) دراسة في نماذج روائية نسائية مختارة, Beirut, Dar al-Farabi, 2016.