Biographical Appendix of Women Activists 4

  1. Wajīha Husseini (1908), born in Jerusalem. She was the wife of ‘Abdel Qader Husseini: Wajīha was destined to live the burdens implied to her husband; the fighter despite inheriting a great deal of property from her father. Her role in helping the fighters in supporting their needs was invaluable. She participated in smuggling, hiding and feeding as well as securing the fighters supplies in the different locations within her husband’s lifetime.[1]
  1. Wahida al Khalidi, was among the founders of the Arab Women’s Union in 1928. She was among the women who attended the Arab Convention. Together with Matiel Moghannam, they were the main signatories on the written communications in the early 1930s to the High Commissioner.[2] Wahida was the wife of Hussein Fakhri Khalidi.
  1. NimraTannous, lived in Jerusalem and worked as a telephone operator. During the 1948 war, she was twenty-four. She played an important role in warning the Arab leaders that the enemies may monitor them. A historical moment in her life was when she tried to reach the Jordanian royal court to want them about the dangers. She was surprised to be received directly by the king himself (‘Abdullah I) she told him: Jerusalem is in danger your majesty. A response the king did by calling for his prime minister and organizing a trip immediately to Jerusalem.[3]
  1. Serene Husseini (1920-2008), born in Jerusalem. She contributed with a breath taking biography on her memories in Jerusalem that allows vivid memories of real Jerusalemite life that history cannot wash away. She lived a life of exodus and diaspora after having Jerusalem as her springhouse, Jericho the winter house and Sharafat the summerhouse. Her life became an exodus from Beirut to Baghdad, and Jerusalem became a visiting place. She studied as a child in the Pre School of the American colony. Her school years where in the new Islamic institute, which was closed in 1930 by the British forces. She studied later in the friend’s school in Ramallah, and in Beirut she graduated from the American university of Beirut and was married there. She became part of the Palestinian women union, and worked closely with refugees in Lebanon after 1967.[4] [5]
  1. Fikriyeh Sidqī: A writer,  who wrote in anonymous under the pseudo name of “Qarīah” (A reader). She went to Al Quds School. She wrote in Filastin Paper. Later, she wrote under the name of “a searcher in the desert”. Fikriyeh encouraged Palestinian women to work on their own promotion step by step and empower themselves. She was the first woman to attend a lecture in the YMCA for the author Amin Riana who resided in Haifa. Her presence in that lecture as the only woman, sitting next to men, made an example of fearlessness, and became the topic of newspapers and was described as the liberal Palestinian girl, the Higher Commissioner was present in that event and he applauded her presence and addressed Muslim women through her in asking for their own right of existence.[6]
  1. Hilweh Zīdan, a female martyr in 1948 massacre of Deir Yasin. Hilweh saw her husband and sons one after the other fighting the Zionist terror groups, and she courageously pulled an old gun and started fighting until she was killed. [7]
  1. Hayat Bilbesi was the principle of Deir Yasin Girls School. She was murdered among the other teachers in the school and they were thrown in the well of the village in Deir Yasin’s[8]
  1. Fadwa Touqan (1917-2013), born in Nablus the sister of the renowned poet Ibrahim Touqan was born to a rich conservative family who denied female’s access to education or movement. Her exchange letters with her brother Ibrahim, who encouraged her to read and write, discovered her skills in poetry and writing. She moved to his residence of living in Jerusalem and stayed there until his death. During that period she blame active and her literal and poetry contribution was appreciated. She wrote many novels and poems. An important figure in the Palestinian literature, not less than her brother.[9]
  1. Salma Husseini (1920-2002), born in Jerusalem. Salma used to collect donations for the prisoners inside the British prisoners, as a student guide in Jerusalem’s school with her colleagues. She grew up within the atmosphere of women’s work, since her mother (Thurayah Daoud Husseini) was a member of the Arab Women’s Association, headed by Zleikha Shihābi in that time. Her activity became as that of other Palestinian wives during the 1936-1938 revolts in hiding weapons for the husbands and supporting the fighters with food and hiding them when chances required. She became a member of different organizations after the Nakba, including the Red Crescent, the Arab Women Union. She wrote critical articles on education in al Jihād Newspaper, she wrote poetry, but was confiscated by the Israeli forces in 1967 after an investigation with her accusing her of provocations to the public. She was also active in Jam’iyyet Tanzeem al Usra  (Family Organizing Society).[10]
  1. Najwa Ka’war (1923-2015), born in Nazareth. A writer and poet. She studied in Nazareth and received her higher education in Dar al Mu’allimāt in Jerusalem. She was an activist and worked on promoting cultural life in Jerusalem and Palestine. She published novels and articles. Her novels where broadcasted in Jerusalem Radio and the Far East as well as Holland. She lived between Haifa, Jerusalem, and Ramallah and ended in Beirut. [11]

Hind al Husseini (1916-1994), born in Jerusalem. She finished her elementary education from the Islamic school for girls in the old city of Jerusalem and graduated from the English school in 1937 and worked as a teacher. She gained her remarkable reputation after rescuing the orphans who survived the Deir Yasin Massacre in April 1948, where she converted her family mansion into an orphanage that continue to operate until this day. During the 1936 revolution, as a young woman, she was active in collecting donations to the fighters with other women activists. She joined the Arab women’s union in 1945. And established a school and a girl’s college Dar al Tifl al ‘Arabi[1]

[1] Najjar, 152,207,291,331

[1] Khalidi, Hussein wa mada ahd al mujamalat

[2] Najjar, 324-325

[3] Najjar, 40-42

[4] Husseini serene, memories of Jerusalem.

[5] Najjar, 285-288

[6] Najjar, pg 239-240

[7] Najjar, 330-331

[8] Najjar, 150-158, 330-331

[9] Najjar, pg 274-275

[10] Interview, ibid. pg 355-381

[11] T=19648

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