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JSPES, Vol. 30, No. 3 (Fall 2005)
pp. 285-304

The Economics of Coping: the Plight of Women in Iraq's Informal Economy

Robert Looney

The author analyzes the role of women in the Iraqi economy, especially the informal sector, in recent times and considers the effect that changes to their role in the economy have had and will have. The paper argues that Iraqi women working in the informal sector face a difficult future the nature of which will depend largely on their educational background, Ba'athist ties during the former regime, the strength of various religious groups opposed to women pursuing activities outside the household, and the areas in which women attempt to pursue a career.