Document Type





African women, Political organizing, Horizontal organizing, Social movements, Social transformation




African American Studies | Africana Studies | African Languages and Societies | African Studies | Agricultural and Resource Economics | Comparative Politics | Social Justice | Women's Studies


In 2019 we witnessed the possibilities of a multi-ethnic, multi-religious, multi-racial, multi-cultural, and multi-gendered democracy and a bottom-up democratization process led by women. Sudanese youth and women led and participated in mobilization and demonstration that not only reflected the mass character of the social formation, but also managed to subvert the Islamist military dependent capitalist state (and its apparatus). Over the span of 30 years, the regime, under Omar al-Bashir, managed to entrench and escalate structures and systems of exploitation and oppression necessary for capital accumulation. The intensified neoliberalization and militarization, at the expense of women’s super-exploitation, was made possible through allegiance to imperialism and deployment of political Islam. Despite the historical efforts of Islamization and Arabization and the repression ensued by successive military regimes, Sudan has had a strong history of women’s and working peoples organizing and resistance. The horizontal (non-hierarchical) networking and autonomous organizing of different groups and sectors in society in 2018/19, however, challenged the power structure in Sudan and reorganized politics and economy to serve the interests of the dominant social classes in Sudan. The Sudanese struggle for social reproduction, embedded in the class and anti-imperialist struggle, has reawakened many possibilities. However, much of the news regarding the uprising and women’s role glossed over these possibilities along with the structural and cultural complexities of Sudanese women. Unlike readings that situate the 2019 uprising in the Arab world and in relation to the “Arab Spring,” this thesis is an exploration of the Sudanese uprising in Africa and an acknowledgement of the radical possibilities it has brought. To counter the denial of Africanity, the homogenization of women, and the simplification of complex societies and organizing, I use an African/Black radical feminist approach that illuminates the realities of Sudan and the people of Sudan. By investigating the role of women alongside other social forces and reflecting on the working and living conditions of some of the most exploited and oppressed groups in Sudan, this work explores how women are fundamental to liberation struggles with radical possibilities.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.