Female migration and its psychological consequences in the novel Al-kafereh by Ali Badr

Document Type : Research Paper


1 PhD in Arabic Language and Literature

2 Assistant Professor in Department of in Arabic Language and Literature, Ilam University



Intruduction: One of the Most Important Immigration issues in Recent Decades is the Increasing Involvement of Women in the Migration Process especially the Increase in the Migration of Independent Women. It is Called "Feminization of Migration”. Immigration Can Improve Women's Independence and Empowerment in the Family and the Society, Change Traditional Norms, Introduce them to Fairer Social Norms as well as Improve Women's Rights, Gender Equality, and Economic, Social, Employment and Educational Opportunities. Although Immigration Can be very Beneficial, it can also Create Many limitations, Including Social norms and limited laws, Racial Discrimination, Exploitation, and Psychological Trauma. In the novel Al-Kaferat, Ali Badr tells the Story of the migration of Sufi to Belgium, who has to Emigrate Illegally so as to Escape forced Marriage, Poverty, loneliness, Discrimination, Sexual Violence, and War.
Methodology: The purpose of this study is to investigate the migration of women and its psychological consequences in a descriptive-analytical manner. The study seeks to answer the fundamental question of ‘what are the psychological consequences of Sufi’s migration in the novel Al-Kaferat?’
Results and Discussion: As a female refugee immigrant, Sufi goes through a process from the moment she arrives in Belgium until she is accepted as a citizen. At the beginning of her arrival in Belgium, she encounters a kind of cultural shock or initial passivity. This stage includes several cases, first in the form of a honeymoon, in which everything is pleasant and attractive for her. But this stage does not last long because it confronts Sufi with some damage, including her apparent difference as an Arab woman from the people of the host country. This makes her an unpleasant and threatening alien. What makes it even more difficult for her is to obtain an asylum permit, learn the Belgian language and find a suitable job. Most importantly, the discriminatory behaviors she faces at work as an immigrant woman is painful. Sufi tries to adapt to the host community to some extent by learning the target language, finding a job, and reducing the pressure of this cultural blow. After this stage, Sufi experiences a kind of marginalization and frustration that leads her to deep sadness and ultimately suicide, which is due to loneliness, lack of good communication in the new place, and lack of acceptance. In the last stage, Sufism reaches a new orientation in the form of adaptation to the new culture. This compatibility occurs in the form of complete resemblance to the host community. In the case of a change of the fundamental views in Sufi’s life, from a refugee to a legal immigrant, to a change of identity from Fatima to a Sufi, to trying to speak Belgian without a her non-native accent, and to a change of residence from an immigrant to Belgium. The changes in dress and behavior lead to unlimited social relationships with Belgian men.
Conclusion: Immigration may be voluntary or forced. Voluntary migration is primarily an economic incentive to improve one's living and working conditions. But forced migration is the result of coercion and for political reasons. In the past, women migrated as dependent on men, while, nowadays, many women migrate alone or with their children. The migration of women as workers, refugees, students, business partners, etc. can be called the feminization of migration. This type of migration is strongly influenced by gender and can be along with restrictions, opportunities and incentives for migration. Feminization of immigration is a gender pattern of migration in which a high number of women leave their place of residence or birth for work or marriage. For many years, women have been neglected in studies related to immigration. Migration of women often induces two other changes or transformations: the feminization of poverty and the feminization of work. Feminization of immigration is one of the most problematic forms of migration, which leads to issues such as violence, abuse of women and their exploitation in social aspects. Women, like men, for various reasons, such as finding better living conditions, protecting their children, escaping political and work turmoil, sometimes prefer to migrate with an ambiguous fate. Among the many causes that affect this, the strong ones can be enumerated as poverty and material needs as well as the need for family support, just like the case men. However, poverty is not always the main reason for women's decision to migrate. Social conditions and the effects of traditions and customs on the family situation also affect this decision.


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