Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Lancaster

Ruba A. Al-Hassani is a Legal Sociologist who takes interdisciplinary and bottom-up approaches to amplify social & legal justice issues and their advocates. She also is a keen advocate for Alopecia Awareness.

Media

On the Iraq Protests

BBC America World News, January 13, 2020Television

URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QRSsOcP6NnE&t=2s

Multi-faith groups in Canada form protective rings around mosques

Press TV, February 4, 2017Television

URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SjnEPkkDgA

An interview with Press TV, where the aftermath of the Quebec mosque shooting was discussed.

Nearly 35,000 Civilians Displaced from Mosul (Iraq)

Press TV, March 3, 2017Television

URL: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x5e7avf

Interview with Press TV, where the displacement of thousands of civilians from Mosul, Iraq, is discussed.

Demonstrations turn ugly in Washington DC

Press TV, January 20, 2017Television

URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XPmMQ7FJl80

An interview with Press TV, which discussed Donald Trump's inauguration, and hate crimes/rhetoric across the US and Canada.

The World Radio, November 8, 2021Radio/Podcast

URL: https://theworld.org/media/2021-11-08/tensions-high-prime-minister-s-home-targeted-iraq

Iraq's Prime Minister survived an assassination attempt only hours after armed groups made several death threats against him. This interview discusses the direct consequences of the attack.

Voice of Islam Radio UK, September 24, 2021Radio/Podcast

URL: https://voiceofislam.co.uk/shows/the-breakfast-show/

The discussion covers Islamophobia in Western media impacts not only local Muslims, but also local & foreign policy, therefore Muslims in other countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan.

Vancouver's Co-op Radio 100.5 FM, May 2, 2016Radio/Podcast

An interview on behalf of the Canadian Association of Muslim Women in Law with Vancouver's Co-op Radio discussed the Environics Survey of Muslims in Canada, as well as Muslim sentiments regarding discrimination, representation, and identity.

BBC World Service Radio, July 4, 2016Radio/Podcast

URL: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03zlc0l

An interview with BBC World Service Radio discusses the tragic bombing in Karradah, Baghdad, which killed over 400 Iraqi civilians, and the aftermath.

CHIN Radio Ottawa 97.9 FM, May 13, 2016Radio/Podcast

An interview with CHIN Radio Ottawa addressed the lack of a solid and open discourse around mental health in the Arab and Muslim communities, and what steps must be taken to bring about change.

Iraq's new protester parties plan to change the country

Ruba Ali Al-Hassani: Working With Survivors

Muslim American Leadership Alliance, November 25, 2016Print

URL: https://www.malanational.org/ruba-working-with-survivors/

"This year [2016], MALA is spotlighting individual stories from men and women who take a stand to eliminate violence against women, both nationally and globally. Our community looks forward to supporting UN Women’s Orange the World Campaign to support efforts to end violence against women and girls worldwide. UN Women and partners around the world are marking the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence, launching from International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on November 25th until UN’s International Human Rights Day on December 10th."

Canada's Muslims embrace their country – even when it doesn't embrace back

The Christian Science Monitor, February 20, 2017Print

URL: http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/2017/0220/Canada-s-Muslims-embrace-their-country-even-when-it-doesn-t-embrace-back

Did an interview with The Christian Science Monitor and spoke on behalf of the Canadian Association of Muslim Women in Law. In this interview, I addressed the rise of Islamophobia in Canada.

Iraqi Women Academics Form Network to Overcome Challenges

Al-Fanar Media, December 29, 2021Online

URL: https://www.al-fanarmedia.org/2021/12/iraqi-women-academics/#.Yc7zfk4vfJ4.twitter

The Iraqi Women Academics Network, or IWAN, brings together female scholars whose research focuses on Iraq to help them overcome difficulties in teaching and research.

The network’s members intend to make IWAN an institution that supports Iraqi women researchers inside and outside the country.

Muqtada al-Sadr: Iraq’s kingmaker in uncertain times

Al-Jazeera English, October 23, 2021Online

URL: https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/10/23/muqtada-al-sadr-iraqs-kingmaker-in-uncertain-times

Self-proclaimed reformer Muqtada al-Sadr plays a pivotal role in shaping Iraq's future. His unpredictability works to his advantage, & his shortcomings are many. What happens next in government-formation is uncertain.

Iraq Protest Movement Defies Odds, Outperforms in Elections

The Arab Gulf States Institute in Washington, October 13, 2021Online

URL: https://agsiw.org/iraq-protest-movement-defies-odds-outperforms-in-elections/

Results from Iraq’s elections show that a determined young generation can organize and win seats, no matter the obstacles placed in the way by a political system most Iraqis lost faith in long ago.

Torture persists in Iraqi prisons following death of three detainees in Basra

Every woman’s nightmare: honour killing in South Iraq

Three Iraqi women explain how and why they stay anonymous online

Rest of World, June 17, 2021Online

URL: https://restofworld.org/2021/three-iraqi-women-explain-how-and-why-they-stay-anonymous-online/

The internet affords some Iraqi women unprecedented freedom, but for many, it’s hard to shake the patriarchal norms of their IRL lives.

En Irak, Kazimi perd une nouvelle manche contre les milices

L'Orient Le Jour, June 11, 2021Online

URL: https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1264834/en-irak-kazimi-perd-une-nouvelle-manche-contre-les-milices.html

La libération de Kassem Mousleh, commandant au sein des Forces de mobilisation populaire accusé de l’assassinat de l’activiste Ehab el-Ouazni, souligne à nouveau l’impuissance des autorités face à l’impunité dont bénéficient les factions armées pro-Téhéran dans le pays.

In Iraq, Joe Biden Haunted by Obama's Foreign Policy Missteps

Outspoken Iraqis fear rogue groups after analyst killed

'A man of conviction': Grief and fury greet assassination of Iraqi analyst

Coronavirus: Iraq sees soaring case numbers as government plans austerity drive

Malak, quemada viva por desobedecer a su marido en Irak

El País (Internacional), April 18, 2020Online

URL: https://elpais.com/internacional/2020-04-17/malak-quemada-viva-por-desobedecer-a-su-marido-en-irak.html?outputType=amp&ssm=TW_CC&__twitter_impression=true

"Una agresión machista durante el confinamiento saca a la luz la vulnerabilidad de las mujeres tras dos décadas de democracia fallida"

The article discusses domestic violence in Iraq during the COVID-19 pandemic, and women's vulnerability during this time.

Storytelling: Restorative Approaches to Post-2003 Iraq Peacebuilding

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Journal of Intervention and Statebuilding

July 22, 2021

Top-down national reconciliation initiatives overlook the significance of, and connection between, story and culture in social conflict resolution. They have thus failed to emerge in post-2003 Iraq. This article draws on the theoretical insights from social constructionism to examine the potential of centreing storytelling within a bottom-up restorative peacebuilding process. It posits that integrating storytelling-based practices, such as restorative justice dialogue and restorative education, within Iraq's legal and educations systems can promote an inclusive, cross-communal public discourse and facilitate bottom-up and inclusive peacebuilding practices.

URL: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17502977.2021.1955501

Free Speech Under Threat in Iraq

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by The Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy

May 17, 2021

In this piece, I explore the various ways in which state and non-state forces violate & threaten free speech in Iraq. This includes both physical & legislated repression, and warrants international attention.

URL: https://timep.org/commentary/analysis/free-speech-under-threat-in-iraq/

The US invaded Iraq in complete impunity. 18 years on, the legacy endures

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by The New Arab

April 12, 2021

The US-led invasion of Iraq was waged with impunity, so it should be of no surprise that impunity would be its legacy. When the architects and parties involved in the invasion were not held accountable for war crimes and were allowed to rebuild a state through belligerent intervention, they were not inclined to set up a system rooted in accountability and justice.

URL: https://english.alaraby.co.uk/english/comment/2021/4/13/post-war-iraq-at-18-a-state-of-impunity-endures

Hate Speech, Social Media and Political Violence in Iraq: Virtual Civil Society and Upheaval

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani, Joey Shea

Published by Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy

February 12, 2021

Militias in Iraq engage in online hate speech to target Iraqi journalists and primarily protesters & activists. Militias target them online & offline, & the government's response is lacking.

URL: https://timep.org/commentary/analysis/hate-speech-social-media-and-political-violence-in-iraq-virtual-civil-society-and-upheaval/

Iraq Protests Battle for State Sovereignty

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy

January 20, 2021

Too often, developments in Iraq are discussed through the lens of a U.S.–Iran proxy war, quite visibly excluding the voices of Iraqi citizens and protesters demanding political, economic, and social justice. Iraq's October Revolution is a movement that has triggered a turning point in Iraqi history. It has found its place in Iraq’s social consciousness & the battle for state sovereignty.

URL: https://timep.org/commentary/analysis/iraq-protests-battle-for-state-sovereignty/

The Seeds and Blossoming of Iraq's October Spring

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Zenith Magazine

October 25, 2020

This article has been translated into German and published *in print* by Zenith Magazine in October 2020 for a Special Issue on the 10-year anniversary of the Arab Spring.

URL: https://www.academia.edu/44368235/THE_SEEDS_AND_BLOSSOMING_OF_IRAQS_OCTOBER_SPRING

Maintaining the Feminist Spring of Iraq’s October Revolution (Part III of III)

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Inside Arabia

April 24, 2020

Where there is corruption there is exploitation and violation of human rights. Iraq’s October Revolution shakes the foundation of a corrupt system built on women’s and girls’ exploitation. This article is the third installment of a three-part series that addresses the roots and forms of corruption and ties it to the October Revolution. The first discusses the gendered roots of Iraqi corruption; the second focuses on the deepening of corruption in gender-based inequalities in Iraq; and the third highlights the Feminist Spring of Iraq’s October Revolution and the challenges it faces.

URL: https://insidearabia.com/maintaining-the-feminist-spring-of-iraqs-october-revolution-part-iii-of-iii/

Corruption and Deepening Gender Inequalities in Iraq (Part II of III)

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Inside Arabia

April 10, 2020

Where there is corruption there is exploitation and violation of human rights. Iraq’s October Revolution shakes the foundation of a corrupt system built on women’s and girls’ exploitation. This article is the second installment of a three-part series that addresses the roots and forms of corruption and ties it to the October Revolution.

URL: https://insidearabia.com/corruption-and-deepening-gender-inequalities-in-iraq-part-ii-of-iii/

Corruption and Exploitation of Gender in Iraq (Part I of III)

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Inside Arabia

March 27, 2020

Where there is corruption there is exploitation and violation of human rights. Iraq’s October Revolution shakes the foundation of a corrupt system built on women and girls’ exploitation. This article is the first in a three-part series that responds to this gap in public discourse and ties it to the October Revolution. It discusses the gendered roots of corruption.

URL: https://insidearabia.com/corruption-and-exploitation-of-gender-in-iraq-part-i-of-iii/

From Iraq to Canada: "We Want a Homeland"

by Ruba Ali Al-Hassani

Published by Inside Arabia

February 29, 2020

Women’s Bodies, Hair, and Clothing: What’s There to Normalize?

Published by The Huffington Post

September 25, 2016

The article discusses the international obsession with women's bodies - particularly Muslim women's bodies. This obsession results in hijab and burkini bans in Europe, as well as in Muslim women's attempts to normalize the hijab, and the social repercussions. The article also discusses a Muslim woman's experience with alopecia.

URL: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/57e8435be4b09f67131e48e3?timestamp=1474862262386

Wahhabism: The Ideology of Hate

Published by The Huffington Post

September 15, 2016

The article discusses Wahhabism, Saudi Arabia's official state ideology, which also inspires terrorism and misogyny.

URL: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/57da37e6e4b04fa361d99306?timestamp=1473919057209

Biography

Ruba Ali Al-Hassani is a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Lancaster University's Department of Politics, Philosophy and Religion and a legal sociologist. Her research employs interdisciplinary methodologies to Iraqi studies, Law, transitional Justice, crime, social control, and social movements. Ruba is also a contributing writer at Inside Arabia and The New Arab. Her commentary and analysis have been featured on networks throughout North America, Europe, and the Middle East, including the BBC and CBC, and in four languages. She co-founded the Canadian Association for Muslim Women in Law and is a board member at the Canadian Centre for Victims of Torture. She has taught at York University and Trent University. Ruba holds a B.Sc. in Psychology & Sociology, a M.A. in Criminology, and an LL.M. in transitional justice, as she completes her PhD at Osgoode Hall Law School, Canada.

Additional Titles and Affiliations

Regional Representative, Iraqi Orphan Aid Foundation

Co-Founder, Steering Committee Member of Canadian Association of Muslim Women in Law

Past Talks

Stories told through social mobilization for, and understanding of, the Welfare State

the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Young Leaders’ Regional Thematic Network - Workshop Theme: “Know Your Rights: Towards More Active Participation of Youth in the Application of the Social Protection & Welfare Law”

Baghdad, Iraq (via video conferencing), September 18, 2015

Empathy: An Important Step Towards Personal and National Reconciliation

The Annual Conference of the Institute of War and Peace Reporting – Conference Theme: “Combating Social Extremism”

Baghdad, Iraq (via video conferencing), April 25, 2015

Links

Expertise

  • Legal and social justice in Iraq
  • Iraqi affairs
  • War on ISIS / Daesh
  • Racial Profiling
  • Middle Eastern Affairs
  • Iraqi Affairs
  • Iraqi Politics
  • Islamophobia
  • Anti-Shia sectarianism

Education/Éducation

  • University of Toronto
    Criminology
    M.A., 2005
  • Trent University
    Sociology, Psychology
    B.Sc. (Hons), 2004
  • Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
    Transitional Justice in Iraq
    LL.M., 2008
  • Osgoode Hall Law School, York University
    Socio-Legal Iraqi Studies
    Ph.D., 2017

    Currently working towards the Ph.D.


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