Egyptian feminist author Nawal al-Saadawi has passed away on Sunday at age 90 after struggling with illness.
Saadawi had made a name for herself due to her bold opinions and staunch defense of women’s rights.
Time magazine last year had included Saadawi on its list of “100 Women of the Year”, as part of celebrations for International Women’s Day.
Born in 1931 in Qaliubiya’s Kafr Tahla village, Saadawi was brought up in a large traditional family with eight siblings.
According to Time magazine, her 1972 book “Women and Sex” established her as a true defender of women’s rights in Egypt, fearlessly criticizing the violence women endure such as circumcision in rural communities.
“Prison was a rebirth”, the magazine wrote in reference to Saadawi’s time spent imprisoned for speaking against the state.
“For Saadawi, the sentence was a clear demonstration of the link between political power and patriarchy.”
With “eyebrow pencil and a roll of toilet paper”, Saadawi penned her prison experiences in the 1983 book “Memoirs From the Women’s Prison”, which influenced discourse on women’s liberation in the Arab world.