I have written about the terror of human trafficking and sexual slavery in earlier posts, so I am pleased to introduce a new post that is based on the book Half The Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity For Women Worldwide that I`m reading right now. A wonderful emotional outlet, since it gives hope in addition to informing the readers about one of the crisis the world struggles with today.
Sometimes books about serious issues can be so depressing and overwhelming they’re hard to get through. Sometimes they’re so steeped in religious or political opinions that the real issues get lost. Sometimes they make broad assumptions or use fuzzy logic that leave you with more questions than answers.
Half the Sky is not one of those books.
More than 100 million women are missing – Amartya Sen, Nobel Prize-winning economist
Written by a married couple- the first married couple to win a Putlizer Prize- Half the Sky takes a look at gender inequality around the world. The authors consider gender inequality the current major humanitarian issue- on par with the Holocaust and slavery from the years past.
In their book, Kristof and WuDunn show how a little support can transform the lives of women and girls all over the world. “Women are not the problem,” they write, “they are the solution”. How so? Studies have indicated that when women hold assets or gain income, that money is more likely to be spent on nutrition, medicine and housing; consequently, their families are healthier. According to Half the Sky, for every dollar a woman earns, she invests 80 cents in her family; men are more likely to spend the majority on themselves. If a woman is given access to microfinance, livestock gifts and proper vocational training, she can begin to take charge of her own life and of her family’s income. The outcome? She becomes the solution to combating gender inequality.
The global statistics on the abuse of girls are numbing. It appears that more girls have been killed in the last fifty years, precisely because they were girls, than men were killed in all the battles of the twentieth century. More girls are killed in this routine “gendercide” in any one decade than people were slaughtered in all the genocides of the twentieth century. | In the nineteenth century, the central moral challenge was slavery. In the twentieth century, it was the battle against totalitarianism. We believe that in this century the paramount moral challenge will be the struggle for gender equality around the world. (xvii)
Many of the stories in this book are wrenching, but keep in mind this central truth: Women aren’t the problem but the solution. The plight of girls is no more a tragedy than an opportunity.
I loved the book, and maybe you will too?
Here is a trailer showing what the book is all about:
It seems that many women (men`s also allowed) are actually raising their voices!
- Selling the Issue and Not the Person on July 26, 2011
- Half the Sky and Human Rights
- BBB Warning: Door-to-Door Magazine Sales Crews Invade South Charlotte Neighborhoods on May 24, 2011
- Analysis: How to tackle slavery in Asia (IRINnews.org)
- DFW Nonprofit Battles Human Trafficking (dfw.cbslocal.com)
- The war on human trafficking in the Caribbean (researchhumantrafficking.wordpress.com)
- Campaign against human trafficking in Kosovo (worldbulletin.net)
- 19-year-old Huntsville woman rescued in Louisiana kidnapping, human trafficking case (al.com)
- New prostitution law ‘vital’: MLA (belfasttelegraph.co.uk)