January 27, 2021

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The Underground Girls of Kabul

The Underground Girls of Kabul
Author : Jenny Nordberg
Publisher : Unknown
Release Date : 2015
Category : Social Science
Total pages :366
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An award-winning foreign correspondent who contributed to a Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times series reveals the secret Afghan custom of disguising girls as boys to improve their prospects, discussing its political and social significance as well as the experiences of its practitioners.

The Underground Girls of Kabul

The Underground Girls of Kabul
Author : Jenny Nordberg
Publisher : Broadway Books
Release Date : 2014-09-16
Category : Social Science
Total pages :288
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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.

The Underground Girls Of Kabul

The Underground Girls Of Kabul
Author : Jenny Nordberg
Publisher : Hachette UK
Release Date : 2014-09-16
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :368
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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.

The Means of Reproduction

The Means of Reproduction
Author : Michelle Goldberg
Publisher : Penguin
Release Date : 2009-04-02
Category : Political Science
Total pages :272
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New York Times columnist Michelle Goldberg's brilliant investigation of the global struggle over women's reproductive rights—"the worldwide battle between the forces of modernity and those of reaction, being fought on the terrain of women's bodies" Through Goldberg's meticulous reporting across four continents, The Means of Reproduction highlights the past and present of feminist activism around the world. In the face of a new wave of authoritarianism, we can look to the stories within this book—from an abortion provider turned health minister of Ghana to survivors of domestic abuse in India to pioneers of access to birth control throughout the Global South—as both blueprint and inspiration. With broad historical scope and lucid prose, Goldberg's analysis demonstrates that women's rights are key to flourishing societies.

A Woman Among Warlords

A Woman Among Warlords
Author : Malalai Joya
Publisher : Simon and Schuster
Release Date : 2009-10-20
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :240
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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 woman committed to making a difference in the world, no matter the cost.

Be Safe I Love You

Be Safe I Love You
Author : Cara Hoffman
Publisher : Simon and Schuster
Release Date : 2015-04-21
Category : Fiction
Total pages :320
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Returning with deep psychological scars after a tour of duty in Iraq, soldier Lauren Clay guides her younger brother to an upstate New York oil field that has become the subject of her obsession and begins teaching him survival skills while revealing herexperiences.

I Am a Bacha Posh

I Am a Bacha Posh
Author : Ukmina Manoori
Publisher : Skyhorse
Release Date : 2014-10-14
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :176
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A 2015 Amelia Bloomer List Selection "You will be a son, my daughter." With these stunning words Ukmina learned that she was to spend her childhood as a boy. In Afghanistan there is a widespread practice of girls dressing as boys to play the role of a son. These children are called bacha posh: literally "girls dressed as boys." This practice offers families the freedom to allow their child to shop and work—and in some cases, it saves them from the disgrace of not having a male heir. But in adolescence, religion restores the natural law. The girls must marry, give birth, and give up their freedom. Ukmina decided to confront social and family pressure and keep her menswear. This brave choice paved the way for an extraordinary destiny: she wages war against the Soviets, assists the mujaheddin and ultimately commands the respect of all whom she encounters. She eventually becomes one of the elected council members of her province. But freedom always has a price. For "Ukmina warrior" that price was her life as a woman. This is a stunning and brave memoir about a little known practice that will challenge your perceptions about gender and the courage it takes to live your life to the fullest. Skyhorse Publishing, along with our Arcade, Good Books, Sports Publishing, and Yucca imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs. Our list includes biographies on well-known historical figures like Benjamin Franklin, Nelson Mandela, and Alexander Graham Bell, as well as villains from history, such as Heinrich Himmler, John Wayne Gacy, and O. J. Simpson. We have also published survivor stories of World War II, memoirs about overcoming adversity, first-hand tales of adventure, and much more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

Raising My Voice

Raising My Voice
Author : Malalai Joya
Publisher : Pan Australia
Release Date : 2009-07-01
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :288
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Malalai Joya has been described as the bravest woman in the world. As a teenager she worked as a woman's rights activist under the Taliban, running underground classes and clinics in her native Afghanistan that would have resulted in her torture and execution if she'd been caught. After the fall of the Taliban, Malalai was elected as one of the few women to represent her province at the first assembly to frame a new Afghan constitution. Here she dared to speak out against the crimes of the war lords, who - backed by the Americans - now ruled the country. To her their crimes were almost as bad as those of the hated Taliban, yet the West seemed content to support them as part of their Realpolitik approach to Afghanistan - my enemy's enemy is my friend. Her public denunciation resulted in several attempts to assassinate her, and for the last five years she's lived under constant threat, moving from safe house to safe house. It hasn't stopped her speaking out though, and on the back of her courage she was elected to Afghan's first parliament. She represents the voiceless, the oppressed, the victims and the innocents of Afghanistan's endless cycle of violence. She's outspoken, passionate and fearless - an extraordinary woman to emerge from decades of brutal and misogynistic repression. Her book and her voice are set to resonate around the world.

Notes from the Underground

Notes from the Underground
Author : Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Publisher : Courier Corporation
Release Date : 2012-03-05
Category : Fiction
Total pages :96
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Darkly fascinating short novel depicts the struggles of a doubting, supremely alienated protagonist in a world of relative values. Embraces moral, religious, political, and social themes. Authoritative Constance Garnett translation. New introduction.

Excellent Daughters

Excellent Daughters
Author : Katherine Zoepf
Publisher : Penguin
Release Date : 2016-01-12
Category : Political Science
Total pages :288
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For more than a decade, Katherine Zoepf has lived in or traveled throughout the Arab world, reporting on the lives of women, whose role in the region has never been more in flux. Only a generation ago, female adolescence as we know it in the West did not exist in the Middle East. There were only children and married women. Today, young Arab women outnumber men in universities, and a few are beginning to face down religious and social tradition in order to live independently, to delay marriage, and to pursue professional goals. Hundreds of thousands of devout girls and women are attending Qur’anic schools—and using the training to argue for greater rights and freedoms from an Islamic perspective. And, in 2011, young women helped to lead antigovernment protests in the Arab Spring. But their voices have not been heard. Their stories have not been told. In Syria, before its civil war, she documents a complex society in the midst of soul searching about its place in the world and about the role of women. In Lebanon, she documents a country that on the surface is freer than other Arab nations but whose women must balance extreme standards of self-presentation with Islamic codes of virtue. In Abu Dhabi, Zoepf reports on a generation of Arab women who’ve found freedom in work outside the home. In Saudi Arabia she chronicles driving protests and women entering the retail industry for the first time. In the aftermath of Tahrir Square, she examines the crucial role of women in Egypt's popular uprising. Deeply informed, heartfelt, and urgent, Excellent Daughters brings us a new understanding of the changing Arab societies—from 9/11 to Tahrir Square to the rise of ISIS—and gives voice to the remarkable women at the forefront of this change. From the Hardcover edition.

Bad Paper

Bad Paper
Author : Jake Halpern
Publisher : Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Release Date : 2014-10-14
Category : True Crime
Total pages :256
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The Federal Trade Commission receives more complaints about rogue debt collecting than about any activity besides identity theft. Dramatically and entertainingly, Bad Paper reveals why. It tells the story of Aaron Siegel, a former banking executive, and Brandon Wilson, a former armed robber, who become partners and go in quest of "paper"—the uncollected debts that are sold off by banks for pennies on the dollar. As Aaron and Brandon learn, the world of consumer debt collection is an unregulated shadowland where operators often make unwarranted threats and even collect debts that are not theirs. Introducing an unforgettable cast of strivers and rogues, Jake Halpern chronicles their lives as they manage high-pressure call centers, hunt for paper in Las Vegas casinos, and meet in parked cars to sell the social security numbers and account information of unsuspecting consumers. He also tracks a "package" of debt that is stolen by unscrupulous collectors, leading to a dramatic showdown with guns in a Buffalo corner store. Along the way, he reveals the human cost of a system that compounds the troubles of hardworking Americans and permits banks to ignore their former customers. The result is a vital exposé that is also a bravura feat of storytelling.

Until We Are Free

Until We Are Free
Author : Shirin Ebadi
Publisher : Random House
Release Date : 2016-03-08
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :304
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The first Muslim woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize, Shirin Ebadi has inspired millions around the globe through her work as a human rights lawyer defending women and children against a brutal regime in Iran. Now Ebadi tells her story of courage and defiance in the face of a government out to destroy her, her family, and her mission: to bring justice to the people and the country she loves. For years the Islamic Republic tried to intimidate Ebadi, but after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad rose to power in 2005, the censorship and persecution intensified. The government wiretapped Ebadi’s phones, bugged her law firm, sent spies to follow her, harassed her colleagues, detained her daughter, and arrested her sister on trumped-up charges. It shut down her lectures, fired up mobs to attack her home, seized her offices, and nailed a death threat to her front door. Despite finding herself living under circumstances reminiscent of a spy novel, nothing could keep Ebadi from speaking out and standing up for human dignity. But it was not until she received a phone call from her distraught husband—and he made a shocking confession that would all but destroy her family—that she realized what the intelligence apparatus was capable of to silence its critics. The Iranian government would end up taking everything from Shirin Ebadi—her marriage, friends, and colleagues, her home, her legal career, even her Nobel Prize—but the one thing it could never steal was her spirit to fight for justice and a better future. This is the amazing, at times harrowing, simply astonishing story of a woman who would never give up, no matter the risks. Just as her words and deeds have inspired a nation, Until We Are Free will inspire you to find the courage to stand up for your beliefs. Praise for Until We Are Free “Ebadi recounts the cycle of sinister assaults she faced after she won the Nobel Prize in 2003. Her new memoir, written as a novel-like narrative, captures the precariousness of her situation and her determination to ‘stand firm.’”—The Washington Post “Powerful . . . Although [Ebadi’s] memoir underscores that a slow change will have to come from within Iran, it is also proof of the stunning effects of her nonviolent struggle on behalf of those who bravely, and at a very high cost, keep pushing for the most basic rights.”—The New York Times Book Review “Shirin Ebadi is quite simply the most vital voice for freedom and human rights in Iran.”—Reza Aslan, author of No god but God and Zealot “Shirin Ebadi writes of exile hauntingly and speaks of Iran, her homeland, as the poets do. Ebadi is unafraid of addressing the personal as well as the political and does both fiercely, with introspection and fire.”—Fatima Bhutto, author of The Shadow of the Crescent Moon “I would encourage all to read Dr. Shirin Ebadi’s memoir and to understand how her struggle for human rights continued after winning the Nobel Peace Prize. It is also fascinating to see how she has been affected positively and negatively by her Nobel Prize. This is a must read for all.”—Desmond Tutu “A revealing portrait of the state of political oppression in Iran . . . [Ebadi] is an inspiring figure, and her suspenseful, evocative story is unforgettable.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) “Ebadi’s courage and strength of character are evident throughout this engrossing text.”—Kirkus Reviews From the Hardcover edition.

The Pearl that Broke Its Shell

The Pearl that Broke Its Shell
Author : Nadia Hashimi
Publisher : Harper Collins
Release Date : 2014-05-06
Category : Fiction
Total pages :480
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Afghan-American Nadia Hashimi's literary debut novel is a searing tale of powerlessness, fate, and the freedom to control one's own fate that combines the cultural flavor and emotional resonance of the works of Khaled Hosseini, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Lisa See. In Kabul, 2007, with a drug-addicted father and no brothers, Rahima and her sisters can only sporadically attend school, and can rarely leave the house. Their only hope lies in the ancient custom of bacha posh, which allows young Rahima to dress and be treated as a boy until she is of marriageable age. As a son, she can attend school, go to the market, and chaperone her older sisters. But Rahima is not the first in her family to adopt this unusual custom. A century earlier, her great-great grandmother, Shekiba, left orphaned by an epidemic, saved herself and built a new life the same way. Crisscrossing in time, The Pearl the Broke Its Shell interweaves the tales of these two women separated by a century who share similar destinies. But what will happen once Rahima is of marriageable age? Will Shekiba always live as a man? And if Rahima cannot adapt to life as a bride, how will she survive?

The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing

The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing
Author : Mira Jacob
Publisher : Random House
Release Date : 2014-07-01
Category : Fiction
Total pages :528
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A winning, irreverent debut novel about a family wrestling with its future and its past—for readers of J. Courtney Sullivan, Meg Wolitzer, Mona Simpson, and Jhumpa Lahiri NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY THE BOSTON GLOBE, KIRKUS REVIEWS, BUSTLE, AND EMILY GOULD, THE MILLIONS With depth, heart, and agility, debut novelist Mira Jacob takes us on a deftly plotted journey that ranges from 1970s India to suburban 1980s New Mexico to Seattle during the dot.com boom. The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing is an epic, irreverent testimony to the bonds of love, the pull of hope, and the power of making peace with life’s uncertainties. Celebrated brain surgeon Thomas Eapen has been sitting on his porch, talking to dead relatives. At least that is the story his wife, Kamala, prone to exaggeration, tells their daughter, Amina, a photographer living in Seattle. Reluctantly Amina returns home and finds a situation that is far more complicated than her mother let on, with roots in a trip the family, including Amina’s rebellious brother Akhil, took to India twenty years earlier. Confronted by Thomas’s unwillingness to explain himself, strange looks from the hospital staff, and a series of puzzling items buried in her mother’s garden, Amina soon realizes that the only way she can help her father is by coming to terms with her family’s painful past. In doing so, she must reckon with the ghosts that haunt all of the Eapens. Praise for The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing “With wit and a rich understanding of human foibles, Jacob unspools a story that will touch your heart.”—People “Optimistic, unpretentious and refreshingly witty.”—Associated Press “By turns hilarious and tender and always attuned to shifts of emotion . . . [Jacob’s] characters shimmer with life.”—Entertainment Weekly “A rich, engrossing debut told with lightness and care.”—The Kansas City Star “[A] sprawling, poignant, often humorous novel . . . Told with humor and sympathy for its characters, the book serves as a bittersweet lesson in the binding power of family, even when we seek to break out from it.”—O: The Oprah Magazine “Moving forward and back in time, Jacob balances comedy and romance with indelible sorrow. . . . When her plot springs surprises, she lets them happen just as they do in life: blindsidingly right in the middle of things.”—The Boston Globe

My Forbidden Face

My Forbidden Face
Author : Latifa,
Publisher : Virago
Release Date : 2008-09-04
Category : Biography & Autobiography
Total pages :192
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Latifa was born into an educated middle-class Afghan family in Kabul in 1980. She dreamed of one day of becoming a journalist, she was interested in fashion, movies and friends. Her father was in the import/export business and her mother was a doctor. Then in September 1996, Taliban soldiers seized power in Kabul. From that moment, Latifa, just 16 years old became a prisoner in her own home. Her school was closed. Her mother was banned from working. The simplest and most basic freedoms - walking down the street, looking out a window - were no longer hers. She was now forced to wear a chadri. My Forbidden Face provides a poignant and highly personal account of life under the Taliban regime. With painful honesty and clarity Latifa describes the way she watched her world falling apart, in the name of a fanatical interpretation of a faith that she could not comprehend. Her voice captures a lost innocence, but also echoes her determination to live in freedom and hope. Earlier this year, Latifa and her parents escaped Afghanistan with the help of a French-based Afghan resistance group.