·      AbdullahOcalan, as seen in this photo, was one of the founding members of the KurdistanWorkers Party, or the PKK, who fought against the Turkish government for localautonomy for over 39 years. ·     Originallya student of political science, Ocalan was heavily influenced by Americansocialist thinker Murray Bookchin, and his ideas of communalism, autonomy atthe local level and radical democracy with a strong participatory dynamic.  ·     Ocalanwas also a devoted advocate for women’s rights. In opposition to honour-basedreligious and tribal views of women, Ocalan stated that “The level ofwomen’s freedom and equality determines the freedom and equality of allsections of society”. ·     Bytaking advantage of the chaos of the Syrian revolution, local administrationsof Rojava have allowed themselves to put into physical practice Ocalan’s philosophyof womens rights, ethnic cohesion, self-administration and direct democracy.