By Maysar Sarieddine
Lebanese women face discrimination and injustice shaped by their society’s overall values, beliefs, and identities. The purpose of this qualitative critical ethnography was to explore the Lebanese cultural unconscious, including cultural memory and communicative memory; and second, to inspire community transformation and social change to respond to the needs of women who have been abused, violated, and marginalized. Interviews and focus group discussions were performed with both male and female Lebanese participants. The qualitative thematic analysis of the data pointed to the need to constantly examine the behavioral practices around gender as approved by society. Male and female Lebanese participants suggested that increased community/ family awareness of respect for women using collaboration and interaction between groups is the most effective method in realizing a collective vision of fairness and equality for Lebanese women. The practice of self-reflective actions, the presence of cultural responsibility, commitments to the changes in discipline, and the balance of biological responsibility of both genders to have an equal role and duty in society were also discussed. The study also reported that violence against women can be resolved through different methods and practices. The key solutions found included an act or experience of critically renouncing violence and discrimination against women through the reduction of confrontation and violence as well as the removal of gender role biases. With the methods and practices discovered, the researcher hopes to co-create concrete and significant changes for Lebanese women that contribute to their empowerment and liberation from restrictive and restructure gender-based cultural norms.