Saudi Women: Change and Challenge

Feb 13, 2018
Kay Hardy Campbell

Waldoboro — Jefferson author Kay Hardy Campbell will discuss Saudi Women: Change and Challenge Saturday, Feb. 24, at 1:30 p.m. at the Waldoboro Public Library, 958 Main St./Route 220 in the village. The talk will offer perspectives on current changes facing Saudi women including the recent government ruling that will officially permit women to drive starting this June.

Campbell is an Arabic-speaking writer who worked as a freelance journalist while living in Saudi Arabia from 1978 to 1985. She wrote about Saudi culture, the arts and business for English language publications including the Arab News, Saudi Gazette and Saudi Business Magazine. She currently writes feature stories for AramcoWorld Magazine; and has returned to Saudi Arabia three times on assignment. Her blog on Saudi women driving has been following the subject since 2009.

A graduate in Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Minnesota, Campbell also earned a master’s degree from Harvard in Middle Eastern studies; and an MBA from Northeastern University. She is the author of “A Caravan of Brides,” a recently published historical novel set in the world of Saudi women. She will discuss the historic elements in her novel during the talk, and will have copies available for sale.

“A Caravan of Brides” is a multi-generational story about Saudi women. Set in the late 1970s in the freewheeling city of Jeddah on Saudi Arabia’s west coast, it also steps back and traces the early history of Saudi Arabia, starting in World War I, all through the eyes of women.

“Usually, when we hear about the history of the Arabia, it’s just about politics, war and oil,” Campbell said. “I wanted to explore how women lived through those years.”

For more information, call the library at 832-4484 or visit

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or

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