I Felt Like One Of My Father's Songbirds, Let Out Of Its Cage': Driving As A Woman In Saudi Arabiaby The Daily Eye Team June 20 2017, 4:52 pm
It began as a protest and became a national talking point. A women’s rights activist reveals what happened when she filmed herself behind the wheel In 2011, as the Arab spring brewed, I began a campaign to allow women to drive in Saudi Arabia, mobilising them via Twitter and Facebook. I thought that if someone posted a video of a woman driving, it might “normalise” the experience and show Saudi citizens there was nothing dangerous about it. I also wanted to prove that many of us already knew how to drive – that we had licences and even cars. And I wanted to prove that the Saudi authorities would not stop a female driver. I asked another activist, Wajeha, to accompany me when I made the video. Because my brother was not available, I also decided to ask a friend, Ahmed, if he would come too, since an unaccompanied woman would raise suspicions. Wajeha would be the film crew and Ahmed would be our designated driver until I slid over and took the wheel of my purple Cadillac SUV. I had spent several years saving my money for the car; a car that I would now for the first time be driving on actual Saudi kingdom streets.