• LOCATION 18 | Tales of the Past: Tracing Dubai’s origins in Deira

    Women in the UAE

    Turn right here and keep going for the next few minutes. This is Al Khor Street.

    You’ll notice gold and jewellery shops popping up around here. That’s because we’re now getting close to the Gold Souk, which is our final stop on this tour. On our way we’ll also pass by the Women’s Museum, or Bait Al Banat, and it’s the perfect opportunity to talk about the role of women in the UAE.

    Women have always been central to life here. In the early days, when men embarked on the arduous journey to the pearling banks, it was women who cared for the children and held the community together for long stretches of time.

    But women also had roles beyond the home. To give you just one example, it's said that the women of Ras Al Khaimah took up arms alongside the men to fight a British invasion in the early 1800s.

    Women have also been influential because of their links to the men in power. It's said that Sheikh Zayed’s mother deserves a lot of the credit for the region’s political stability over the course of the last century. Sheikha Salama bint Butti Al Qubaisi also left a lasting impression on her sons, including Sheikh Zayed.

    Nine women currently serve in the UAE Cabinet—including Shamma Al Mazrouei, the Minister of State for Youth Affairs. She was just 22 when she was appointed in 2016, which made her the youngest minister in the world.

    There are Emirati women who are pioneers in their fields, and plenty of Emirati women who serve in the armed forces, including four female fighter pilots. In fact, the UAE opened the region’s first military college specifically for women in 2014.

    Keep going straight.

Tales of the Past: Tracing Dubai’s origins in Deira