Friday, October 29, 2010

Afghan Boys Are Prized, So Girls Live the Part

Zahra, 15, has been dressing and acting like a boy since she was a child. If it were up to her, she would never go back. “Nothing in me feels like a girl,” she said.
The New York Times did a piece on Afghan families who dress a daughter up as a boy in order to alleviate cultural pressure and, in some cases, make ends meet. I thought it shined some interesting light on how easy it is to stereotype and misunderstand cultures that we hear about or live with every day. As a creole woman, being part of a culture that some people have never even heard of much less understand, I experience this first hand. All we talk about here is the burqa. But what are really the issues these women/young girls face? They're speaking. Are we listening?

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