Reaching beyond sensational headlines, this volume at last offers a three-dimensional portrait of Afghan women. In a series of wide-ranging, deeply reflective essays, accomplished scholars, humanitarian workers, politicians, and journalists–most with extended experience inside Afghanistan─examine the realities of life for women in both urban and rural settings. They address topics including food security, sex work, health, marriage, education, poetry, politics, prisoners, community development, and more. Eschewing stereotypes about the burqa, the contributors focus instead on women’s empowerment and agency and on their struggles for peace and justice in the face of a brutal ongoing war.
“It is far too rare to hear Afghans, particularly Afghan women, speak in their own voices about their realities, and this volume addresses this lack with both courage and clarity.” KAVITA RAMDAS, Fellow atStanfordUniversityand former President of the Global Fund for Women
“This book urgently and importantly avoids politicizing women’s issues for personal gain.” SIMA WALI, former President of Refugee Women in Development and former Peace Talks delegate at the Bonn Conference
This is a valuable book addressing a question that needs to be understood if peace in Afghanistanis ever to be achieved.” HALEH AFSHAR, coauthor of Women in Later Life: Exploring Race and Ethnicity
“A timely analysis of Afghan women’s current situation and a significant contribution to an extremely important but still neglected subject. This is essential reading.” HAFIZULLAH EMADI, DevelopmentConsultant,Afghanistan
“A nuanced picture that successfully dispels much misinformation. An outstanding volume.” RICKIE SOLINGER, coeditor of Interrupted Life: Experiences of Incarcerated Women in the United States
“This apt, interesting, and close-to-the-ground collection about the constraints, opportunities, and contexts in which Afghan women live today is a triumph. Tremendously useful to scholars and activists worldwide.” SHAHLA HAERI,BostonUniversity