JAWdesses and friends came together in New York for an informative and intimate discussion on international journalism and women. With JAWS members traveling to Japan following disaster, and the continued tension in the Middle East, highlighted by the attack of CBS correspondent Laura Logan, there was plenty to discuss.
JAWS member and Iraqi journalist Alaa Majeed led the discussion along with bringing amazing dishes prepared by her sister.
Majeed was candid on her fearless reporting in Iraq including almost being kidnapped, sexual harassment and working with foreign news organizations to tell her country’s stories. She did without some of the bare necessities of a war reporter like pants, a backpack and sneakers because she was a woman. Even with the discrimination, Majeed worked her gender to her advantage.
“So many times I got good stories,” she said. “Families might have just lost a son to a roadside bomb and would tell me their stories. As a woman and mother, they opened to me.”
The evening also included light moments, like Merrill Perlman’s story of the word-challenged chauvinist who tried to get a rise out of her by discussing organisms, his wife’s climaxes.
With more journalists working in new media and online, the discussion also included how social media has impacted reporting on the Middle East uprising.
A special thanks to JAWdess Peggy Collins for organizing the event and JAWdess Rita Henley Jensen and the Women’s eNews team for opening their doors (and Tupperware) to JAWS.
Here’s to more regional JAWS events – and organisms for all!