Skip to main content

Book Review: Half the Sky by Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn


In developing countries around the world, women and young girls are being oppressed and abused in ways those of us in developed nations can hardly imagine. It is commonplace for young girls of 12 years old to be kidnapped and sold to brothels. Babies don't receive medical treatment or are simply killed because they are female. Women are tortured, stoned to death or doused with acid to uphold their family's honor. They suffer from debilitating injuries from botched childbirth, and then are isolated from the rest of the village and left for dead. They are raped, beaten and mutilated because they are women.

Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn have traveled the world, seeing firsthand the atrocities that women endure in developing countries across Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Each chapter of Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide delves into one area of abuse or oppression that is a daily reality for women in these countries. But they don't just rant about the problem. Kristof and WuDunn dig deeper to the root of the problem. They look at how cultural beliefs, among both men and women, allow these abuses to continue. They look at how lack of education of girls and women is a major contributing factor.

But they also show how educating women can not only stop these abuses, but also bring prosperity and economic growth to entire countries. After all, half of the population in these countries currently isn't contributing to the economy because they are not allowed to be educated or employed. The authors look at programs and solutions that have worked in some of these areas around the world, and they look at why other programs have failed. They present a perfect balance of problems and solutions, showing how some women in these countries have overcome the cultural norm and escaped from oppression.

Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide is an excellent report on the oppression of women and the solutions to overcome it. I highly recommend it and look forward to discussing it at my book club meeting in February.

My Rating: 4/5

This review was written based on a copy of Half the Sky that I borrowed from the library.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Getting back to blogging

It seems that blogging has dropped to the bottom of my list for the past year, and was pretty low for the year or two prior to that. I love to read, and am continuing to do so, but as my regular readers know I haven't been around much. My last blog post was almost a year ago!!

There are many things that have taken me away from blogging. Work has been much more challenging and interesting these past few years, but that means I really don't want to get back on the computer when I get home at night - or on the weekends.

Family life has been more busy with kids having multiple activities in the evenings, leaving little time to just hang out and write about the books that I read.

I will admit to a bit of a Facebook addiction, which means way too much time spent scrolling through my newsfeed instead of doing something more productive. This is one of the things I'm working on and hoping that this will free up some time for getting back to the blog.

Overall, life is good. Work is …

Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop

I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and Mundie Moms are hosting the Freedom to Read Giveaway Hop in honor of Independence Day in the United States, and I've decided to participate.

To stick with the theme of Independence Day, I'm doing what I did last year for this hop:

I'm giving away a book of your choice that is written by an author from the United States.
It can be any genre as long as the author is from the United States. You choose the book (up to $15), and I'll order it and have it mailed to you from Book Depository.

The contest ends on Thursday, July 5th at midnight Eastern Time. The winner will be notified by e-mail. If they do not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.

Happy 4th of July! I hope you have a safe and fun holiday!

Enter here:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Now check out all of the other giveaways you can enter at the links below!

Freedom Giveaway Hop

Simply Stacie and I Am A Reader, Not A Writer are hosting the Freedom Giveaway Hop in honor of Independence Day in the United States, and I've decided to participate.

To stick with the theme of Independence Day:

I'm giving away a book of your choice that is written by an author from the United States.
It can be any genre as long as the author is from the United States. You choose the book (up to $15), and I'll order it and have it mailed to you from the vendor of my choice.

To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below telling me your favorite U.S. author (this doesn't have to be the author of the book you choose if you're the winner). Include your email address so I can contact you if you win. This giveaway is open to U.S. and Canadian mailing addresses only. I've decided to open this up to international entries as long as Book Depository ships to your address.

For extra entries:
Leave a separate comment if you follow My Book Retreat through Google Frie…