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Episode #4

Roe v. Wade v. Women Everywhere

October 24th, 2022

The overturning of Roe v. Wade reverberates far beyond the U.S. Women in the Middle East discuss abortion, sex education and their view of My Body My Choice.

“How do the new restrictions on abortion in the U.S. impact the battle for reproductive rights in the rest of the world? What does My Body My Choice mean in the Middle East?”

“Across the region, abortion is mostly illegal but also more easily available, for those who can afford it and because it is usually permissible to save a mother’s life. I speak first to Nana Abulseoud from RESURJ, in Cairo, about her reaction to the overturning of Roe v. Wade and the global battle to preserve progress made on women’s reproductive rights in the last two decades. In Beirut, I speak to Dr. Sandrine Atallah, a doctor in sexual medicine and psychosexology, about her efforts to bring sex education to social media becuase there is none in the classroom. And Sura, one fo the anonymous co-founders of Mauj a sexual awareness and education online platform, tells me why they created Deem a vibrator for Arab women everywhere.”


Dr. Sandrine Atallah

Dr. Sandrine Atallah is a doctor in sexual medicine and psychosexology, working on educating people in the MENA region on sexual health and pleasure. She teaches sexology at the University of Saint Joseph in Beirut and at the Lebanese American University. She hosts her own podcast Hakeh Sareeh (Frank Talk) and has over 3 million followers on TikTok from across the region

Twitter: @DrSAtallah / Instagram: @drsandrineatallah

Nana Abuelsoud

Nana Abuelsoud is an Egyptian feminist advocate for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) based in Cairo. She is focused on young people’s right to access information on contraception. In 2016, Nana was a World Contraception Day ambassador with Women Deliver and Brayer. She is also a member of the Advisory Board at The A Project, a Lebanese organization for sexual rights and health and reproductive justice.

Twitter: @Nabuels

Sura from Mauj

Sura is the co-founder of Mauj, a sexual wellness brand launched in 2020 by a collective of Arab women between Beirut, Jeddah, Dubai, and Cairo, for Arab women everywhere. From tackling misinformation and misconceptions about sexual health, to creatively breaking taboos around female pleasure, Mauj has created an online space to destigmatize the conversation about sexuality and reproductive health in the Arab world through science-backed resources and expert advice in an easy and accessible language.


Further reading

The Doctors Risking Everything to Offer Abortions Across State Lines The New York Times

On Abortion, American Muslim Women Say Islamic History is on The Side of Mercy Washington Post

“ Why it’s Time to Break the Taboos Around Female Sexual Health in the Arab World” Vogue Magazine

“Mauj: Destigmatizing Sexual Health in the Arab World” Beirut Today

“A feminist accident: On abortion as Part of Society” Mada Masr

“The American War on Women” New Lines Magazine

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