Eltahawy speaking at the 2011 Personal Democracy Forum
August 1, 1967 |
Port Said, Egypt
|Education||American University in Cairo|
Mona Eltahawy (Arabic: منى الطحاوى, IPA: [ˈmonæ (ʔe)tˤːɑˈħɑːwi]; born 1 August 1967) is a freelance Egyptian-American journalist and commentator based in New York City. She gained American citizenship in 2011. She writes essays and op-eds for publications worldwide on Egypt and the Islamic world, including women's issues and Muslim political and social affairs. Her work has appeared in the Washington Post, The New York Times, Christian Science Monitor, and the Miami Herald among others. She has also been a guest analyst on U.S. radio and television news shows.
Eltahawy also speaks publicly at universities, panel discussions and interfaith gatherings on human rights and reform in the Islamic world, feminism and Egyptian Muslim-Christian relations in addition to her other concerns.
Early life 
Eltahawy was a news reporter throughout the 1990s. She was a correspondent for the Reuters News Agency in Cairo and Jerusalem and has written for The Guardian, The Washington Post, the International Herald-Tribune and U.S. News and World Report.
Eltahawy moved to the United States in 2000.
She wrote a weekly column for the Saudi-owned, London-based international Arab publication Asharq Al-Awsat from 2004 to 2006 before her articles were discontinued by editor Tariq Alhomayed for being "too critical" of the Egyptian regime.
On November 24, 2011, she was arrested in Cairo while covering renewed protests in Tahrir Square. She was held in custody for 12 hours, and accused those who held her of physical and sexual assault. Her left arm and right hand were fractured.
On September 25, 2012, Eltahawy was arrested for vandalizing an American Freedom Defense Initiative advertisement in a New York City subway station that read: "In any war between the civilized man and the savage, support the civilized man. Support Israel. Defeat Jihad." She had been covering the ad with spray paint and also sprayed paint on a woman who tried to stop her.
Eltahawy has been a strong critic of both the regime of Hosni Mubarak and the Egypt-based Muslim Brotherhood, referring to both as "old, out-of-touch men." In an interview in February 2011, she also expressed certainty that the Muslim Brotherhood could not "gain the support of the majority of Egyptians."
In 2009, The Economist said that Eltahawy used the phrase "the opium of the Arabs" referring to Israel, describing, as the magazine elaborated, "an intoxicating way for them to forget their own failings or at least blame them on someone else. Arab leaders have long practice of using Israel as a pretext for maintaining states of emergency at home and putting off reform."
Eltahawy has spoken out on behalf of women's rights in the Arab world, including attacking female genital mutilation. In a May 2012 article in Foreign Policy, she wrote, "Name me an Arab country, and I'll recite a litany of (sc.anti-female) abuses fueled by a toxic mix of culture and religion that few seem willing or able to disentangle lest they blaspheme or offend."
Awards & honors 
- 30, among "100 Most powerful Arab women" in 2012, Arabian Business
- 258, among Power 500 2012, Arabian Business
- Special Prize for Outstanding Contribution to Journalism, Anna Lindh Foundation, 2010
- Samir Kassir Award for Freedom of the Press, for opinion writing by the European Commission (2009)
- Cutting Edge Prize, for distinguished contribution to the coverage of the Middle East by Next Century Foundation. (2006)
- Distinguished Visiting Professor at the American University in Cairo (2006)
- Muslim Leader of Tomorrow by the American Society for Muslim Advancement (2005)
- "Critical Voices 3 - Speakers - Details: Mona Eltahawy". The Arts Council. Retrieved 24 November 2011.
- Mona Eltahawy: Egypt's angry young woman
- She graduated from the AUC in 1990 with a bachelor's degree; and a master's degree in mass communication with a concentration in journalism in 1992.  Source
- "Mona Eltahawy Reportedly Detained, Sexually Assaulted In Egypt", The Huffington Post, November 24, 2011
- Eltahawy, Mona (June 19, 2006). "A perilous dance with the Arab press". The New York Times. Retrieved November 24, 2011.
- Shiv Malik "Journalist Mona Eltahawy alleges sexual assault in Egypt detention", The Guardian, November 24, 2011
- "Woman Arrested for Marring Anti-Jihad NY Subway Ad". ABC News. Associated Press. September 26, 2012. Archived from the original on September 29, 2012.
- "Bio: Mona Eltahawy". Palestine Note. Archived from the original on 15 July 2011. Retrieved 24 November 2011.
- Interview with Mona Eltahawy, PBS, February 9, 2011
- "Which way will they go?" 23 July 2009, The Economist.
- "Why Do They Hate Us", Mona Eltahawy, Foreign Policy, May/June 2012
- "Mona Eltahawy". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 24 November 2011.
- "Muslim Women: Past and Present - Mona Eltahawy". Women's Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equality. Retrieved 24 November 2011.