Sophia the Robot was just given official citizenship in Saudi Arabia. For women in that country, it felt like a direct hit at their rights.
Sophia isn’t subject to the same conservative rules as Saudi women. Sophia, apparently, isn’t required to wear a hijab. While Saudi women are required to be accompanied by a male guardian out of the country, Sophia didn’t seem to be tied down by these restrictions.
Sophia spoke at a Saudi investors conference last week and before she event left the stage, she was granted official citizenship. Meanwhile, Saudi women who marry foreigners aren’t even allowed to pass on citizenship to their own children. Just last month, women were finally granted the right to drive in Saudi Arabia. Next month, they’ll be able to watch events in currently all-male venues.
While Sophia seemed to win over the Saudi government on her first visit to the country, flesh-and-blood women are still fighting for their right in the conservative kingdom.