SOAS University of London

Centre for Gender Studies

Kim Jezabel Zinngrebe

BA (London), MSc (LSE), MPhil (Oxford)
  • Overview
  • Research


Kim Jezabel Zinngrebe
Centre for Palestine Studies (CPS)

PhD Student Associate Member

Ms Kim Jezabel Zinngrebe
Email address:
Thesis title:
'To be "Palestinian" is to be free as a woman': feminism among Palestinian women in Israel.
Year of Study:
Internal Supervisors


Kim is a fourth year PhD student at the Centre for Gender Studies at SOAS, University of London. She holds a BA in Modern History and Politics (London), a MSc in Politics and Government in the European Union (LSE) and a M.Phil. in Modern Middle Eastern Studies (Oxford). She currently works as teaching assistant for the History Department of Royal Holloway, University of London and conference administrator at the Centre for Gender Studies, SOAS.

PhD Research

This thesis investigates the significance of 'feminism' pertaining to the experiences of Palestinian women in Israel. The women included in this research project are largely members of the third Nakba generation of Palestinians who were born and raised within the Israeli settler colonial state. As such, their personal stories are closely bound up with concepts of 'citizenship', 'women's' and 'national liberation'. In contrast to the 'double oppression' framework which places Palestinian women's experiences in Israel within two mutually reinforcing oppressive layers of 'settler colonial state' and 'Palestinian patriarchal society', I strive for a more holistic understanding of women's experiences by taking into account multiple and fluid interlocking structures of domination. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork all over the country, the objective of my research is essentially two-fold:

First, by carefully exploring and disentangling the complex and often contradictory experiences and narratives of Palestinian women, a wide array of imaginings of women's and national liberation emerges which are considerably informed by feminist ideas and ideals. Out of these stories a new national subjectivity emerges that strives to resist closely intertwined settler colonial and patriarchal control of and pressure on native Palestinian women to abandon their politics and essentially 'disappear' as 'good (Arab Israeli) women'. Despite of their influences, contemporary Palestinian feminist discourse cannot be regarded as an offspring of Western and Israeli feminist discourse. Instead, it is considerably engendered by the passing on of oral herstories of women's ancestors and their experiences of the Nakba. The women storytellers attribute 'feminist qualities' to these relatives and their acts of resistance frequently bestowing them with 'feminist' role model functions.

'To be "Palestinian" is to be free as a woman', an interviewee's statement that captures the widely proclaimed desire by feminists for national and women's liberation to go 'hand in hand' is complicated by the fact that 'Palestinian women' cannot be treated as an undifferentiated category. Thus, the second goal of my research is to widen the discourse of 'Palestinian feminism' in Israel to include voices which have remained either marginalised or completely excluded from organised women's groups such as black, poor, trans-/intersex, and religious women. Taking into account these women's stories and experiences, internalised and reproduced power hierarchies will be identified, shedding light on the politics of domination that take place within feminist groups.


  • Zinngrebe, K.J. (2016) 'Reflections on the silence on sexual violence among Palestinian feminists in Israel', Feminist Review Volume 112, Palgrave Macmillan
  • Zinngrebe, K.J. (2015) ‘Claiming marginal space: the contentious politics of citizenship among Palestinian feminists in Israel’ book chapter in Contentious Politics in the Middle East, (ed.) Gerges, F., Middle East Centre, London School of Economics and Political Science
  • Zinngrebe, K.J. (2014) ‘Review of The Politics of Reproduction in Ottoman Society, 1838-1900, by Gülhan Balsoy’, Feminist and Women Studies Association (UK & Ireland)


  • 'European Conference on Politics and Gender', ECPR Standing Group on Gender and Politics, University of Uppsala, Sweden, 11-13 June 2015
  • 'Acts of Citizenship in Today's Palestine', Institut français du Proche-Orient & Institute for Palestine Studies, Ramallah, Palestine, 25 March 2015
  • 'Gendered Citizenship: History, Politics and Democracy', The Ida Blom Conference, University of Bergen, Bergen, 14-15 October 2013
  • 'Contentious Politics in the Middle East', LSE Middle East Centre PhD Conference, London School of Economics, London, 30 September 2013
  • '╩║Doing Citizenship╩║ in the Middle East and North Africa', SeSaMO Conference 2013, University of Pavia, Pavia, 17-19 September 2013
  • 'Minorities and Majorities: Between Maginality and Participation in the Middle East', BRIMES Gaduate Section Conference, University of Oxford, Oxford, 8-9 May 2013


  • Centre for Gender Studies
  • Centre for Palestine Studies (CPS) PhD Student Associate Member
  • Doctoral Studentship Evangelisches Studienwerk Villigst (funded by the German Protestant Church), awarded 2012


  • Feminist theory
  • Palestine/Israel
  • Politics and History of the Middle East
  • Relations between the Middle East and Europe