Monday, August 2, 2010

half the sky

a few months ago i read the book "half the sky" by nicholas kristof and sheryl wudunn. the title of the book stems from the chinese proverb "woman hold up half the sky". if you have not yet read this book, please stop what you are doing and buy it immediately. everything else can wait, seriously.

"half the sky" shares the stories of women all over the world who have faced maternal mortality, sex trafficking and forced prostitution, and violence due to gender. the stories of these women are absolutely shocking and captivating - what amazed me in reading their stories was that these women have survived some of the largest atrocities done to human beings and yet they don't consider themselves victims. they have survived to tell their stories and they just try to live their lives for themselves, their families, and to help other victims.

the number of women who die from giving birth without proper medical care is frightening. in the book they state that during WW1 more women died giving birth in the usa than men died fighting in the war! it wasn't until suffrage that women's lives were given value which led to better care surrounding child birth; however, women all over the world are still fighting for this type of access to doctors and health care.

i also found it very interesting how the authors described how much effect women can have in developing nations when they are able to have a say in the families finances. children are more likely to be educated and healthy. ok - enough of my feminist rant.

once you read the book, i guarantee you it will change your life. it will make you care, it will make you cry, and it will push you to want to save the world. this book is my calling and i know now what issues matter to me most that i want to support as much as possible. i still have to determine exactly which organization(s) that i want to be a part of but any of them would be amazing.

go buy the book, go read the book, go cry for women's struggles, and then go get involved.

"it's never too late to be what you might have been" - eliot

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