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Being female in a Taliban-like society 
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Masters


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Post Being female in a Taliban-like society
I finished the book this evening. My main reaction was the realization how much it sucks being a women in a society, like Afghanistan under the Taliban, that treats women so horribly.

Now, that wasn't a surprise, since I've ready plenty about Afghanistan before. However, the novel was more emotionally intense than the news stories and real-life accounts that I've seen elsewhere. Perhaps I let myself empathize with fictional characters, while I block such feelings when reading about real-world suffering in the news.

It's not a profound insight to observe that women in misogynistic Islamic societies have shitty lives. Still, that's the overpowering sentiment I'm feeling right now.



Sun Jan 13, 2008 2:05 am
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Oddly Attracted to Books

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I, too, had read other books on a similar theme, and I expected violence to erupt at some point in Rasheed's family, which it did.
I, too, was greatly shocked all the same.

As I was reading the final chapters I remembered what I had read in Nelson Mandela's autobiography " Long Way to Freedom" , about the oppressors and the oppressed. This naturally applies to men oppressing women:

"It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity".


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Sun Jan 13, 2008 7:27 am
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Genius


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Post I'm pleased to see the authors of such books . . .
I've always enjoyed books from other cultures. It's pleasing to see that these books are getting this attention.

I've read four of 'em in the past year's time:

A Thousand Splendid Suns

Kit Runner

Purple Hibiscus

Half a Yellow Sun

And we thought Caravan was a shocking novel? Hoo boy!

Thanks so much to both these authors for their work!



Fri Feb 01, 2008 1:55 pm
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Genius


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Post BTW . . .
Any other recommendations?

I have a title on order from the library - can't think of it - something with the word or name 'Shirah' in it. It's supposed to be a really good one.



Fri Feb 01, 2008 2:01 pm
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Carly, i am also a fan of foreign cultures and books about them. I could write pages of recommendations, and here are a few:

1- Iran
Daughter of Persia, by Sattareh Farman Farmaian.

It's a true story, and one of the things that makes it interesting is that it starts with the writer's family before the time of the Shah.
It's a mind-opener and is very well written.

2- China

The Wild Swans is one of many stories about the Cultural Revolution, and one I particularly remember over many years.

For a unique viewpoint on the same period:


Red China Blues: My Long March From Mao to Now
by Jan Wong

The true story of a Canadian student (whose parents had emigrated from China) who worshipped maoism and went to China to pratise communism, blindly following a doctrine that everybody else around her had already given up on -- except party cadres. The amount of time it took her to come to her senses is amazing, but the telling of it is well worth reading.


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Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:01 pm
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Post Thanks, Ophelia . .
Red China Blues, I did a long time ago - in fact, I actually met Jan Wong at Ralph Thornton Centre here in Toronto.

I'll order those other two from the library.



Fri Feb 01, 2008 5:53 pm
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