Middle East – Nike continues to be a driver of change in the Middle East with its new advertising campaign that focuses on female athletes.
What Will They Say About You? presents a variety of strong female figures to challenge the traditional stereotypes of women that have often pervaded Middle Eastern culture and hindered female athletes.
Featuring Olympic fencer Inès Boubakri, competitive figure skater Zahra Lari, Jordan’s first female boxing champion Arifa Bseiso and certified parkour trainer Amal Mourad, the focus is predominantly on sport, although the inclusion of singer Balquees Fathi and actress Fatima Al-Banawi – who narrates the ad in Arabic – demonstrate a wider support for female empowerment in the Arab world.
The film offers the next iteration of its 2015 campaign, which honed in on the narrative of Omani tennis star Fatma Al-Nabhani by offering a wider lens through which to view the Arab world, from Tunisia to Jordan and the United Arab Emirates, demonstrating a wider change in attitude towards women.
With the support of brands such as Nike, cultural shifts in the Middle East are empowering The Athena Woman to explore new versions of herself and build a community of strong female allies.