Anna Antonakis Dipl.Pol.


PhD Candidate


Anna Antonakis is currently finishing her doctoral degree at the Freie University, Berlin under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Cilja Harders and Prof. Dr. Carola Richter. She holds a Diploma in Political Science from the FU Berlin. From 2013 until 2016, she was granted a full research scholarship by the Heinrich Böll Foundation and participated in the project “Elite Change and New Social Mobilization in the Arab World” at the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP) in Berlin as a PhD-Fellow. She has acquired profound regional expertise on Tunisia via various fieldworks since 2009. In her PhD project, she analyses renegotiations of gender and state feminism between 2011 and 2014, critically engaging with theories on (counter)public spheres and intersectionality. She has published on the renegotiation of Gender and Feminisms in networked publics spheres, mobilization and the revolutionary upheavals in Tunisia in different journals and outlets.

Thesis: In Transformation? - Renegotiating Gender and State Feminism in Tunisia: Power, Positionalities and the Public Sphere


In her PhD project, she analyses renegotiations of gender and state feminism between 2011 and 2014, critically engaging with theories on (counter)public spheres and intersectionality. For the analysis, three different dimensions of the public sphere have been distinguished: The institutional dimension encapsulates the level of the national family codification, the constitution of 2014 and the international codifications of women’s rights. Second, the question of representation of women as subjects and objects in the national mass media is investigated within the representational dimension of the public sphere and thirdly the dimension of the local public sphere in form of associations, organizations and encounters.  She finds how the hegemonic concepts of “secular” and “modern” that have been developed in relation to a state feminist paradigm in the post-colonial context are inscribed in negotiation processes in different dimensions of the public sphere but also explores emerging networked feminist counterpublics.

  • Peer Reviewed Journal

Contested Transformation: Mobilized Publics in Tunisia between Compliance and Protest in: Mediterranean Politics (Special Issue "Dynamics of Transformation, Elite Change and New Social Mobilization in the Arab World"), 21 (2016) 1 (online versions October 2015).

  • Book Chapters

Forthcoming 2017: Feminist Networks in Times of multi-layered Transformations. Perspectives from Tunisia. In: Cilja Harders, Carola Richter and Anna Antonakis (ed.): “Media and the Politics of Transformation” Springer VS. Wiesbaden.

(2016) Proteste vor den Umbrüchen: Widerstand im Schatten der Öffentlichkeit. (Protests before the uprisings 2011: resistance in the shadow of the public sphere). In: Atlas des Arabischen Frühlings. Eine Weltregion im Umbruch. Bundeszentrale für Politische Bildung. Berlin.

(2015) Hashtagging the Invisible: Bringing Private Experiences into Public Debate: An #outcry against Sexism in Germany. In: Rambukkana, Nathan: Hashtag Publics - The Power and Politics of Discursive Networks. Peter Lang. New York.

  • Policy Papers

Tunisia's Legitimacy and Constitutional Crisis - The Troika Has Failed. SWP Comments 2013/C 26, August 2013.
(Also published in German language)

Tunesierinnen in Zeiten des Umbruchs – und des Aufbruchs? in: Newsletter Gleichstellung Online. Praxistipps zu Rechtsfragen, Frauenförderung und Gleichstellung, Das höfer-Verlag, 13.08.2012 (online).

  • Monograph

Forthcoming: In Transformation? - Renegotiating Gender and State Feminism in Tunisia between 2011 and 2014: Power, Positionalities and the Public Sphere.

Der Quelltext der "Tunesischen Revolution"-Partizipation in der Gegenöffentlichkeit und an der Schnittstelle von Virtuellen und Realen Räumen: Ein Medienanalytischer Zugang. (The source Code of the "Tunisian Revolution"). Working Paper N° 5, Center for Middle Eastern and North African Politics, Department of Political and Social Science, Free University Berlin, Mai 2012, 34 pages.

  • Specialized Journals and other Publications

Forthcoming July 2017: Book Review: Zeynep Tufekci’s Twitter and Teargas In: Global Media Journal (Deutschland).

(December 2015): Fünf Jahre nach den Aufständen. Eine Spurensuche. (Five years after the uprisings – seeking traces). Heinrich Böll Stiftung.

(Spring 2014): (Me­di­en-) Öf­fent­lich­kei­ten: Spal­tung oder/und Viel­falt? (Media publics in Tunisia: Polarization or Plurality?) in: INAMO, 20 (Frühjahr 2014) 77, p. 30 – 32 (co-authored with with Khouloud Mahdhaoui).

(April 2011):„Ich habe der Netzgemeinde viel zu verdanken“- Ein Interview mit dem tunesischen Internetaktivisten Slim Amamou. („I owe a lot to the net community“- An interview with the Tunisian internet activist and former state secretary Slim Amamou) in: Diwan. Perspektiven vom Mittleren Osten bis Berlin. N°11. P.20-22