Egyptian Woman Posed As A Man To Support Family For More Than 40 Years
When a Egyptian woman named Abu Daooh was pregnant with her daughter in the 1970s, her husband died. It was now up to her to earn money to take care of her family. But there were few jobs for an illiterate woman in traditional Egyptian society. So Daooh dressed as a man to find work like brick making and shoe shining.
Just recently Daooh, now 65, was honored by the Egyptian president and awarded the “woman breadwinner” award. And when she accepted the award and prize of about $6,500 from President Abdel-Fattah El-Sissi, Daooh was wearing a traditional male robe and turban.
“As to protect myself from men and the harshness of their looks and being targeted by them due to traditions, I decided to be a man … and dressed in their clothes and worked alongside them in other villages where no one knows me,” said Daooh, who is still working away.
“My mom is the one who still provides for the family,” Abu Dooah’s daughter said, according to Al Arabiya. “She wakes up every day at 6 a.m. to start polishing shoes at the station in Luxor. I carry the work kits for her as [she’s] now advanced in age.”
In an interview, Dooah told The Guardian she will continue to wear men’s clothes until she dies. “I have decided to die in these clothes. I’ve got used to it. It’s my whole life and I can’t leave it now,” she told the newspaper.
While Dooah story may seem unique, throughout history there have been women who has posed either physically or in name only as men to get better jobs.
It’s truly amazing what women will do make sure their children are taken care of.