An investigative journalist uncovers a hidden custom in Afghanistan that will transform your understanding of what it means to grow up as a girl. In Afghanistan, a culture ruled almost entirely by men, the birth of a son is cause for celebration and the arrival of a daughter is often mourned as misfortune. A bacha posh (literally translated from Dari as “dressed up like a boy”) is a third kind of child--a girl temporarily raised as a boy and presented as such to the outside world. Jenny Nordberg, the reporter who broke the story of this phenomenon for the New York Times, constructs a powerful and moving account of those secretly living on the other side of a deeply segregated society where women have almost no rights and little freedom. The Underground Girls of Kabul is anchored by vivid characters who bring this remarkable story to life: Azita, a female parliamentarian who sees no other choice but to turn her fourth daughter Mehran into a boy; Zahra, the tomboy teenager who struggles with puberty and refuses her parents’ attempts to turn her back into a girl; Shukria, now a married mother of three after living for twenty years as a man; and Nader, who prays with Shahed, the undercover female police officer, as they both remain in male disguise as adults. At the heart of this emotional narrative is a new perspective on the extreme sacrifices of Afghan women and girls against the violent backdrop of America’s longest war. Divided into four parts, the book follows those born as the unwanted sex in Afghanistan, but who live as the socially favored gender through childhood and puberty, only to later be forced into marriage and childbirth. The Underground Girls of Kabul charts their dramatic life cycles, while examining our own history and the parallels to subversive actions of people who live under oppression everywhere.
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An Afghan woman's life expectancy is just 44 years, and her life cycle often begins and ends in disappointment: being born a girl and finally, having a daughter of her own. For some, disguising themselves as boys is the only way to get ahead. Nordberg follows women such as Azita Rafaat, a parliamentarian who once lived as a Bacha Posh, the mother of seven-year-old Mehran, who she is raising as a Bacha Posh as well, but for different reasons than in the past. There's Zahra, a teenage student living as a boy who is about to display signs of womanhood as she enters puberty. And Skukria, a hospital nurse who remained in a bacha posh disguise until she was 20, and who now has three children of her own. Exploring the historical and religious roots of this tradition, The Underground Girls of Kabul is a fascinating and moving narrative that speaks to the roots of gender.
Suraya Sadeed grew up in a peaceful Afghanistan. Following the Soviet invasion in 1979, she left America with her family, building a new life. But after a sudden tragedy, Suraya returned to Afghanistan for a visit that changed everything. Shocked by the suffering and destruction wreaked on her homeland, Suraya was determined to help. Smuggling herself across borders in various disguises, braving warlords and drug-runners, she set up an underground girls' schools in Kabul in order to bring hope and aid to thousands of Afghans. Since then, Suraya has worked tirelessly, trying to raise funds.
Malalai Joya has been called "the bravest woman in Afghanistan." At a constitutional assembly in Kabul in 2003, she stood up and denounced her country's powerful NATO-backed warlords. She was twenty-five years old. Two years later, she became the youngest person elected to Afghanistan's new Parliament. In 2007, she was suspended from Parliament for her persistent criticism of the warlords and drug barons and their cronies. She has survived four assassination attempts to date, is accompanied at all times by armed guards, and sleeps only in safe houses. Often compared to democratic leaders such as Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi, this extraordinary young woman was raised in the refugee camps of Iran and Pakistan. Inspired in part by her father's activism, Malalai became a teacher in secret girls' schools, holding classes in a series of basements. She hid her books under her burqa so the Taliban couldn't find them. She also helped establish a free medical clinic and orphanage in her impoverished home province of Farah. The endless wars of Afghanistan have created a generation of children without parents. Like so many others who have lost people they care about, Malalai lost one of her orphans when the girl's family members sold her into marriage. While many have talked about the serious plight of women in Afghanistan, Malalai Joya takes us inside the country and shows us the desperate dayto-day situations these remarkable people face at every turn. She recounts some of the many acts of rebellion that are helping to change the country -- the women who bravely take to the streets in peaceful protest against their oppression; the men who step forward and claim "I am her mahram," so the fundamentalists won't punish a woman for walking alone; and the families that give their basements as classrooms for female students. A controversial political figure in one of the most dangerous places on earth, Malalai Joya is a hero for our times, a young woman who refused to be silent, a young
Introducing Social Research Methods: Essentials for Getting the Edge is a concise and student-friendly introduction to research methods that uses examples from around the world to illustrate the centrality of social science research in our everyday lives. Explains complex, multi-faceted concepts and methodologies in straightforward prose Designed for students who are new to or skeptical of social science research methods as useful tools for approaching real-world challenges Persuasively argues that social scientific proficiency unlocks an array of personal and professional opportunities beyond the realms of academia A supplementary website features a glossary, test bank, Power Point presentations, a comprehensive list of web resources, a guide to relevant TED lectures and much more
Explores how binary gender and behaviours of gender were actively challenged in classical antiquityProvides a focus on gender on its own terms and outside the context of sex and sexuality Offers an interdisciplinary approach, appealing to Classicists, Ancient Historians, and Archaeologists, as well as audiences working outside the ancient world, in Gender Studies, Transgender Studies, LGBTQ+ Studies, Anthropology, and Women's StudiesCovers a broad time period (6th c. BCE - 3rd c. CE) and addresses both textual evidence and material culture (vases, sculpture, wall painting)Provides history of gender identities and behaviours previously ignored or suppressed by disciplinary practicesGender identity and expression in ancient cultures are questioned in these 15 essays in light of our new understandings of sex and gender. Using contemporary theory and methodologies this book opens up a new history of gender diversity from the ancient world to our own, encouraging us to reconsider those very understandings of sex and gender identity. New analyses of ancient Greek and Roman culture that reveal a history of gender diverse individuals that has not been recognised until recently.Taking an interdisciplinary approach these essays will appeal to classicists, ancient historians, archaeologists as well as those working in gender studies, transgender studies, LGBTQ+ studies, anthropology and women's studies.
Across many parts of the world, violence inflicted in the name of family honor is attracting an increasing amount of attention. Family honor violence, otherwise known as honor-based violence, is physical force inflicted primarily on women for conduct defined as dishonorable. This book explores these conflicts of honor, how they are triggered, how they are handled, and why some lead to death. Drawing on a range of case studies and employing Donald Black’s concept of social geometry, Execution by Family incorporates and goes beyond patriarchy, culture, and kinship to develop a unified theory of family honor violence. It discusses the "honor belt," a series of countries stretching from north Africa to southeast Asia, in which similar forms of inequality, patriarchy, group authority, and gerontocracy are prevalent and how, within the confines of this inequality, honor violence flourishes. Reviewing survey data and pointing to a multi-pronged, cross-national social movement, the book also discusses the future of honor-based violence. Given the growing awareness of family honor violence, Execution by Family will be of interest to anybody concerned with family conflict, violence, crime, and popular morality. It will be invaluable reading for academics and students in the fields of criminology, criminal justice, sociology, social psychology, and anthropology.
Join the conversation with one of sociology’s best-known thinkers. The Third Edition of Introduction to Sociology, thoroughly revised and updated, continues to show students the relevance of the introductory sociology course to their lives. While providing a rock-solid foundation, George Ritzer illuminates traditional sociological concepts and theories, as well as some of the most compelling contemporary social phenomena: globalization, consumer culture, the Internet, and the “McDonaldization” of society. As technology flattens the globe, students are challenged to apply a sociological perspective to their world, and to see how “public” sociologists are engaging with the critical issues of today.
Why has the US so dramatically failed in Afghanistan since 2001? Dominant explanations have ignored the bureaucratic divisions and personality conflicts inside the US state. This book rectifies this weakness in commentary on Afghanistan by exploring the significant role of these divisions in the US’s difficulties in the country that meant the battle was virtually lost before it even began. The main objective of the book is to deepen readers understanding of the impact of bureaucratic politics on nation-building in Afghanistan, focusing primarily on the Bush Administration. It rejects the ’rational actor’ model, according to which the US functions as a coherent, monolithic agent. Instead, internal divisions within the foreign policy bureaucracy are explored, to build up a picture of the internal tensions and contradictions that bedevilled US nation-building efforts. The book also contributes to the vexed issue of whether or not the US should engage in nation-building at all, and if so under what conditions.
Thinking About America's War in Afghanistan -- The Country and Peoples of Afghanistan -- The Taliban Emirate -- The United States Enters Afghanistan -- The Karzai Regime -- Disorder in Kandahar -- The 2006 Taliban Offensive -- Taliban Rule, 2007- -- War in the East -- Taliban Advances -- The Obama Administration and the Decision to Surge -- The Surge in Helmand -- The Surge in Kandahar -- End of the Surge -- Ghazni and the Andar Awakening -- Intervention and Identity -- The 2014 Elections -- The Taliban Offensives of 2015 and -- The Trump Administration -- Peace Talks -- Looking Back.
Malalai Joya is the youngest and most famous female MP in Afghanistan, whose bravery and vision have won her an international following. She made world headlines with her very first speech, in which she courageously denounced the presence of warlords in the new Afghan government. She has spoken out for justice ever since, and for the rights of women in the country she loves. Raising My Voice shares her extraordinary story. Born during the Russian invasion and spending her youth in refugee camps, Malalai Joya describes how she first became a political activist. When she returned to Afghanistan, the country was under the grip of the Taliban and she ran a secret school for girls. A popular MP with her constituents, she received global support when she was suspended from parliament in 2007 because of her forthright views. Malalai Joya's work has brought her awards and death threats in equal measure. She lives in constant danger. In this gripping account, she reveals the truth about life in a country embroiled in war - especially for the women - and speaks candidly about the future of Afghanistan, a future that has implications for us all.
“Inspiring stories that not only capture the suffering of Afghan women, but also show their tremendous courage and resilience and the contribution they are making to build a better future for Afghanistan” (Hillary Rodham Clinton). Told in their own voices, the moving, courageous, and personal stories in We Are Afghan Women vividly describe a country that is one of the most dangerous places to be a young girl or pregnant woman; a country undone by decades of war and now struggling to build a lasting peace; a country where women have defied the odds. Women like Dr. Sakena Yacobi, who ran underground schools for girls until the Taliban fell, after which she established schools across Afghanistan to teach women to read and to educate and prepare girls to become teachers, doctors, lawyers, business owners, and politicians, and Masooma Jafari, who started a national midwives association, after her own mother was forced into marriage when she was twelve years old and gave birth to her first child at thirteen. “An incredible portrait of the Afghan women working to create a better future for their communities and future generations. Their stories of strength and resilience can inspire us all to reach for a more equal and peaceful world” (Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook and founder of LeanIn.Org) and remind us of the dangers of tactics that target women in order to limit their roles in society and in government. Fifteen thousand women are now enrolled in Afghanistan’s universities, but girls continue to face violence for pursuing an education. The realities of life in this part of the world, one of the most dangerous places to be a child or pregnant woman, are tough, but this unique book celebrates the lives of women who have defied the odds. Their eloquent words challenge all of us to answer: What does it truly mean to be a woman in the twenty-first century?
In Afghanistan under Taliban rule, women were forbidden to work or go to school, they could not leave their homes without a male chaperone, and they could not be seen without a head-to-toe covering called the burqa. A woman’s slightest infractions were met with brutal public beatings. That is why it is both appropriate and incredible that the sole effective civil resistance to Taliban rule was made by women. Veiled Courage reveals the remarkable bravery and spirit of the women of the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan (RAWA), whose daring clandestine activities defied the forces of the Taliban and earned the world’s fierce admiration. The complete subordination of women was one of the first acts of the Taliban. But the women of RAWA refused to cower. They used the burqa to their advantage, secretly photographing Taliban beatings and executions, and posting the gruesome pictures on their multi-language website, rawa.org, which is read around the world. They organized to educate girls and women in underground schools and to run small businesses in the border towns of Pakistan that allowed widows to support their families. If caught, any RAWA activist would have faced sure death. Yet they persisted. With the overthrow of the Taliban now a reality, RAWA faces a new challenge: defeating the powers of Islamic fundamentalism of which the Taliban are only one face and helping build a society in which women are guaranteed full human rights. Cheryl Benard, an American sociologist and an important advisor to RAWA, uses her inside access to write the first behind-the-scenes story of RAWA and its remarkably brave women. Veiled Courage will change the way Americans think of Afghanistan, casting its people and its future in a new, more hopeful light.
Never before available in paperback and all but invisible for twenty years, a personal account of the origins of America's longest war. In 1982, the young William Vollmann worked odd jobs, including as a secretary at an insurance company, until he'd saved up enough money to go to Afghanistan, where he wanted to join the mujahedeen to fight the Soviets. The resulting book wasn't published until 1992, and Library Journal wrote: "The wrong book written at the wrong time. . . . With the situation in Afghanistan rapidly heading toward resolution . . . libraries may safely skip this." Thirty years later--and with the United States still mired in the longest war of its history--it's time for a reassessment of Vollmann's heartfelt tale of idealism and its terrifying betrayals. An alloy of documentary and autobiographical elements characteristic of Vollmann's later nonfiction, An Afghanistan Picture Show is not a work of conventional reportage; instead, it's an account of a subtle and stubborn consciousness grappling with the limits of will and idealism imposed by violence and chaos.
The gripping and inspiring story of two extraordinary women--from their imprisonment by the Taliban to their rescue by U.S. Special Forces. When Dayna Curry and Heather Mercer arrived in Afghanistan, they had come to help bring a better life and a little hope to some of the poorest and most oppressed people in the world. Within a few months, their lives were thrown into chaos as they became pawns in historic international events. They were arrested by the ruling Taliban government for teaching about Christianity to the people with whom they worked. In the middle of their trial, the events of September 11, 2001, led to the international war on terrorism, with the Taliban a primary target. While many feared Curry and Mercer could not survive in the midst of war, Americans nonetheless prayed for their safe return, and in November their prayers were answered. In Prisoners of Hope, Dayna Curry and Heather Mercer tell the story of their work in Afghanistan, their love for the people they served, their arrest, trial, and imprisonment by the Taliban, and their rescue by U.S. Special Forces. The heart of the book will discuss how two middle-class American women decided to leave the comforts of home in exchange for the opportunity to serve the disadvantaged, and how their faith motivated them and sustained them through the events that followed. Their story is a magnificent narrative of ordinary women caught in extraordinary circumstances as a result of their commitment to serve the poorest and most oppressed women and children in the world. This book will be inspiring to those who seek a purpose greater than themselves.
Presents the inside story of the women-led underground organization and their fight for the rights of Afghan women.
From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian’s efforts to promote peace through education In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan after a massive earthquake hit the region in 2005; and the unique ways he has built relationships with Islamic clerics, militia commanders, and tribal leaders. He shares for the first time his broader vision to promote peace through education and literacy, as well as touching on military matters, Islam, and women—all woven together with the many rich personal stories of the people who have been involved in this remarkable two-decade humanitarian effort. Since the 2006 publication of Three Cups of Tea, Mortenson has traveled across the U.S. and the world to share his vision with hundreds of thousands of people. He has met with heads of state, top military officials, and leading politicians who all seek his advice and insight. The continued phenomenal success of Three Cups of Tea proves that there is an eager and committed audience for Mortenson’s work and message.
Afghan society is analyzed from a fresh standpoint in this book which discusses the country’s two and a half centuries of socio-political disquiet and outside interference. The author explores the continuous struggle between the central government and the cornerstone of the present state, the tribes. In its examination of the interchange between the centre and the periphery, the book presents a compelling review of Afghan history, the role of Islam and the contemporary theories of state, Islam, nationalism, ethnicity, and tribalism. In addition, Misdaq considers Afghanistan’s dynamism and long established custom of dealing with foreign invaders. Covering the Soviet occupation, ethnic conflicts and the US invasion, the book examines Afghan resilience and the capacity to raise an army of fighting men. Written by a well-respected authority on the region, the book highlights past mistakes which should not be repeated and recommends the way forward for this troubled nation.