Read In the Name of Honor: A Memoir by Mukhtar Mai Marie-Thérèse Cuny Marie-Therese Cuny Linda Coverdale Nicholas D. Kristof Online


In June 2002, Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman from the impoverished village of Meerwala, was gang raped by a local clan known as the Mastoi -- punishment for indiscretions allegedly committed by the woman's brother. While certainly not the first account of a female body being negotiated for honor in a family, this time the survivor had bravely chosen to fight back. In doingIn June 2002, Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman from the impoverished village of Meerwala, was gang raped by a local clan known as the Mastoi -- punishment for indiscretions allegedly committed by the woman's brother. While certainly not the first account of a female body being negotiated for honor in a family, this time the survivor had bravely chosen to fight back. In doing so, Mai single-handedly changed the feminist movement in Pakistan, one of the world's most adverse climates for women. By July 2002, the Pakistani government awarded her the equivalent of 8,500 U.S. dollars in compensation money and sentenced her attackers to death -- and Mukhtar Mai went on to open a school for girls so that future generations would not suffer, as she had, from illiteracy. In this rousing account, Mai describes her experience and how she has since become an agent for change and a beacon of hope for oppressed women around the world. Timely and topical, In the Name of Honor is the remarkable and inspirational memoir of a woman who fought and triumphed against exceptional odds....

Title : In the Name of Honor: A Memoir
Author :
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ISBN : 9781416532293
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 171 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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In the Name of Honor: A Memoir Reviews

  • Caroline
    2019-03-23 19:11

    .This review contains some spoilersThis is the story of Mukhtar Mai, a Pakastini woman who was raped by four men as part of ‘crime of honour’. This is a tit-for-tat revenge system that operates widely in Pakistan. It takes place when a clan (family) believes it has had a wrong done to them, and as a punishment they rape a woman (or murder or disfigure a woman), belonging to the clan who has 'wronged' them. Basically, a woman from the accused family becomes the vehicle for the revenge punishment. There are three different laws operating in Pakistan. The law of the Jirga or village council, the law of Islam, and the law of Pakistan. These three entities often conflict with one another, and often they are not sympathetic to the plights of women in crimes of honour e.g., in Islamic law in Pakistan a woman who has been raped is legally required to provide four male eye-witnesses to the crime!In Mukhtar’s instance there was one massive wrongdoing after another.1) The charges against her clan/caste/family were blatantly false, but they were made by a caste that was very powerful in her village, so they carried weight, in spite of the charges being ridiculous.2) The Jirga (the village council) meeting where this issue was discussed was largely run by the very people who had brought the accusations against her family. They ruled that what was needed was a public apology by a woman from the accused family, knowing full well they really planned to rape her. No-one else in the meeting could stand up against them.3) When she reported the rape to the police, they asked her to sign a blank sheet of paper, planning to fill in an account of the incident afterwards that was sympathetic to the people who had raped her.Her fortunes changed when the local mullah (also a member of the Jirga, so someone who had been present during the discussions preceding the rape), gave a sermon about the situation in the mosque, criticizing what had happened. A local journalist was present and he wrote an article about it. It was then picked up by national newspapers and then by international newspapers, and it became a cause célèbre. Her case went through several courts, (though regrettably in the end only one of her rapists was charged, and given a sentence of life imprisonment).Much of the book discusses Mukhtar’s experiences surrounding the rape - the before, during and after….and the way she rose above this terrifying incident to become an icon both in Pakistan and abroad, for opposing crimes of honour.The situation in Pakistan for women is not good. "Every hour in Pakistan a woman is assaulted, beaten, burned with acid, or killed in the ‘accidental’ explosion of a cooking-gas canister. The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan has recorded 150 cases of rape during the last 6 months in Punjab alone." But people are protesting. In the city of Multan for instance there was a protest of about 3,000 women, arguing both against the verdict of one of the trials concerning Mukhtar’s rape, and also demanding the reform of the infamous Islamic ‘hudud’ laws (whereby women who are raped can be accused of adulterous relations and punished accordingly). There are also various human rights and women’s rights groups in contact with Mukhtar, giving her support. She has become a cornerstone for issues about women’s rights in Pakistan.And that is not all...... Some people who have terrible experiences manage to turn them around, and make them the mounting block for a campaign or humanitarian initiative. So it was for Mukhtar. The second theme of this book is about the school she started in 2002 – the Mukhtar Mai School – in her little home village. With the help of donations from the Pakistan government, Canada and America, it has gone from strength to strength. At the end of 2005 the school had 6 teachers – and there were 160 boys and over 200 girls attending the school. Mukhtar herself is only just learning to read, but her experiences with the law courts, and what she has learnt about the oppression facing women, have made her a passionate advocate of education, especially education for women. It is incredible to think she has been able to achieve so much without even a basic education herself – but she has. It shows an amazing strength of character.I found this book a sobering read. Life in the small villages in Pakistan, run largely by the jirga (the all-male village councils), and with women being treated very much as chattels rather than citizens, did not make for cheerful reading. I felt I learnt a lot though – as often one does about reading about a personal experience rather than just a general article giving statistics……and in that sense it was very positive read.~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Videos of talks given by Mukhtar Mai (the top one is translated into English).

  • Vibina Venugopal
    2019-04-17 14:58

    There was a period where I was reading reading books on the atrocities done on women back to back..This was one among the collections..Though I loved the book it took sometime for me to complete... Procrastination has taken up on me, and I have decided to fight back...Breaking the suspense right in the beginning let me state that I'm in awe for this lady Mukhtar Mai, who like phoenix rose from ash...Mukhtar Mai in late twenties,is divorced yet leads a respectable life, teaching Quran to the local kids of Meerwala..She belongs to Gujar clan , lower caste of tribe to whom literacy is out of their reach..Her younger brother (in early teens) is falsely accused of talking to a girl belonging to Mastois (higher caste).Like a wild fire matters gets worse in few hours, the accusation takes terrible turn from stealing sugarcane to rape...Naturally the family is shaken by the whole event like any other oppressed and supressed feels, the boy is taken to police custody..Mukhtar is the now his brother's soul hope to freedom hence gathering courage she decides to confront the people of higher caste to seek their forgiveness, instead she is met point blank with rifles and utter disgust for her...She is dragged through streets to a stable and through the watchful eyes of onlookers she is gang raped by four men and left to herself naked in agony but alive..She is expected to kill herself as that is what expected from such women under such circumstances...Mukhtar too in her usual line of thoughts plots various means of suicide, but for her caring mother she would have even succeeded..As the initial agony wears out, anger, resentment consumes Mukhtar...Her rage to fight back upon crime done overcomes her slender self..From there begins Mukhtar's battle for justice...From a faint and a feeble peasant she becomes a powerful voice of oppressed women..She describes rules in Pakistan or a muslim country in general for a case to be named as rape , to me it appeared as though they were framed for a woman to lose the case...Still she fought hard against all odds..Her endevour was something unexpected from a weak gender..But unlike other incidents and books I had come across on similar events, the local Imam was quite supportive , but couldn't do much against the powerful people of higher caste..Mukhtar makes persistent effort much against the enormous death threats and honour allurement from all around...Her assiduous actions makes the government and the judiciary to take necessary actions against this terrible crime...Her case attains international attention and help flows from NGO's ...Though nothing can make up for what was done to her, the government awarded her money that she extended in building a school for the children of her village and for those willing to gain education irrespective of gender and caste..Now she travels far and wide not only in her country but all over the world as an ambassador of woman's right and over the years she has employed more teachers and been successful in getting aid for the school..She has even invited the children of higher clan to visit her school...The book is a sad recount of her ordeal through rough water, through all this her undying spirit stands tall.. Her fight. her hurdles through every step made me to sit erect and continue my reading...Honour killing is something very hard to believe in present century yet they happen every now and then..Even in India these take place, I remember coming across a case in December 2012 in Kolkata ,a man (Mehtab Alam) beheading his younger sister in the name of honour killing...All these incidents and books makes me to think where are we heading to?? When at one end we boast of all the achievements mankind has on life, medicine, in terms of education, at the very next turn theses incidents (few being from much educated class ) makes me wonder how to define real progress of a society with all this ..But the truth is through all this, life goes on and we get used to all these events as a part of our life until and unless they hits us right in our own eye in terms of someone close to us...

  • Avital Gertner-Samet
    2019-04-20 12:09

    Dishonored (aka: In the Name of Honor) was an amazing non-fiction. Written by a French reporter and told by the heroine herself in her mother tongue – a tribal dialect from northern Pakistan.This is a story about a fight against the tribal rules which accept brutality against women (inc. rape and murder) as a common way of ironing out differences among men, inc. disputes about the purchase of lands or even about a barking dog.To our western ear that sounds foul, but in rural Pakistan women accept it in total silence. Not Mukhtar Mai.In this amazing story she tells about her fight to get justice and her fight against the “khudud” rules that recognizes rape in only one of the two following cases: If the rapist gives and admission or if there are at least 4 witness to the rape (Muslim men) – In other words, a women is destined to lose the battle and even to be accused of dishonoring her family and sentenced to death by stoning.Unfortunately, I’m not talking about the middle ages but the current 21 century (the story takes place between 2002-2005).Great read.

  • Elliot Ratzman
    2019-04-06 14:56

    Mukhtar Mai, an illiterate peasant twenty-something in Pakistan, was the victim of a gang-rape by members of a powerful clan. They accused her adolescent brother of sex crimes, and demanded Mukhtar submit herself before the town council, which was dominated by strongmen from the powerful clan. Instead of killing herself in shame after the gang-rape, she protested her treatment, pursuing her assailants first with the (corrupt) police, and then successfully (at first) in the courts. Her case received national then international attention. With sympathetic money she helped build a school for girls (and boys) in her village. Against stereotype, Islam is not the issue in her case. The local Imam, sympathetic to MM and her family, was powerless against these rural misogynist bullies. She remains in danger while she pursues gender equality in Pakistan. Championed by Nicholas Kristof in his writings, MM’s story, transcribed and then translated from French makes for quick and inspiring reading.

  • Dana
    2019-03-29 12:04

    just a line or two right now as I have other deadlines happening. I am an MLS reference librarian/ large city urban libraries but not as huge as NYC or Los Angeles.This is the best new book I have read in perhaps twenty years. Linguistically it is extraordinarily simple yet grace-filled in its descriptions. The events in the case are distressing and horrifying.alert: the below does disclose some of the closing events about the lady's experiences.Eventually, when legal advocacy individuals from I believe some British interests....heard of her humiliating non-justice, some leverage was brought to bear on the supposed "authorities" who wanted to not allow disclosure.When she finally rec'd some pittance of funds, years later,instead of getting herself material improvements, she used the entire funds to establish a SCHOOL FOR YOUNG GIRLS.Her grace and quiet spirit are literally astonishing. I could not manage anything other than fury about the events to which she was subjected. This book and this fine human being's story affected me profoundly; and again I mention that the reading level IS NOT academic. It could be used in a group classroom with folks gaining reading skills and it is riveting without relying overly on describing how much blood and gore and body parts mess.I cannot recommend this book more enthusiastically. The only individuals whom I might choose to direct to another choice, would be somebody who is her(him)-self post-trauma and would find it too similar to their own abuse from others.Be aware that English was not the first language into which the book was published. There is a co-author's name (French) under which it might be shelved in a bookstore/ library so look under both peoples' last names.

  • Lisa N
    2019-03-29 15:13

    This is an account of Mukhtar Mai, a peasant Pakistani woman, who in June 2002 was condemned by a tribal council to be gang raped. The rape was in retribution for a false allegation made against her 12-year-old brother. Rather than commit suicide, as was expected, she pressed charges and somehow captured the attention of the international media. Pakistan is a feudal society where it is common for women to be raped and mutilated. Women are kept illiterate and forced to be subservient, not only to men but to the caste system as well. A woman has to ask her brother for permission to step outside of the house. It is a country that keeps no birth records; you have to rely on your parents to tell you how old you are. Under international scrutiny, the Pakistani government awarded Mukhtar compensation money which she used to start a school for girls in her village. Mai speaks a local dialect, Saraiki, and the book was published in French, then translated to English. The language is very simple and straightforward, and it is a quick read. Some excerpts: “My childhood was a simple one of poverty, neither wonderful nor miserable, but full of joy. I would have liked that period to last my whole life long.”“That is what feudal power is. It begins with land and ends with rape.”“…. in spite of police pressure and a ‘tradition’ that wants women to suffer in silence while men do as they please.”“We are objects, and they have the right to do whatever they want with us. Submission is compulsory.”“The common practice in our villages is for men to take justice into their own hands, invoking the principle of ‘an eye for an eye.’ It is always a question of honor, and they may do as they please: cut off a woman’s nose, burn a sister, rape a neighbor’s wife.”

  • Sabrina Rutter
    2019-04-08 17:08

    Mukhtar Mai was born and raised in a poor farming village in Pakistan. There was nothing outstanding about her compared with the other women in her village. She led a quite, peaceful life within the comforts of her family home teaching Koran verses to the local children, and embroidery to the local women to help bring in money for her family. She had worked hard to be an honorable woman after a breif marriage, and subsequent divorce. All of this changed however on the night of June 22, 2002.Mukhtar's youngest brother twelve year old Shakur has been accused of speaking with a twenty something year old woman named Salma of the powerful Mastois clan. In order to bring peace to the situation Mukhtar agrees to go with her father, and uncle to speak with the Mastois. believing that her honorable status within the village will keep her safe she walks into the wolfs den with only her Koran, and humble hopes of reconciliation. this is where the life she has always known ends by being snuffed out by a brutal gang rape.A different woman emerges from the tears of greif, and this Mukhtar is no longer like the other women in the village. She speaks out against those who set out to destroy her, and her family. This is her story of how she fought back with an amazing courage for a woman living in a land where women are to be silent no matter what. "If the honor of men lies in women, why do men whant to rape or kill that honor?"~Mukhtar Mai

  • Andrea
    2019-03-31 15:01

    CourageStrengthBraveryand a Will to SurviveInspirational and heart wrenching at the same time - this woman is truly amazing to say the least. Nothing seems to have been lost in the translation and still has an impact on the reader second to none.Cruel and barbaric to think that even in this day and age the trauma and the cruelties inflicted upon Mukhtar Mai and tens of thousands of other women in similiar situations are still 'socially acceptable' in some cultures. Purely just because they are born female and therefore considered nothing less than second class citizens - lower in the scheme or worth of things than a goat ??I've never really considered myself a feminist in the sense of the word but this woman's story and reminding us of the plight of thousands of other women just like her has really struck a chord within. Everybody should read this story.

  • Rebekka Steg
    2019-03-28 20:16

    In the Name of Honor by Mukhtar Mai is an incredibly powerful, and extremely important memoir that tells of her fight for justice. Mukhtar Mai is from a remote village in Pakistan, who was "sentenced" to be gang-raped by the tribal council of her village, to pay for a crime her 12-year-old brother did not even commit. However, she does not dwell on the injustice committed against her, but instead focuses on her fight for justice and dignity. Instead of committing suicide, as was expected of her, she fought back, and with the settlement she received, went on to open schools in her village and nearby area, to fight against the illiteracy of girls and help other young women to fight back against injustice and inhumane treatment. This is such an important book, and I greatly encourage everyone to read it, it is easy to read, but so powerful and thought provoking.

  • chucklesthescot
    2019-04-05 19:58

    This is an appalling true story which really shows how woman are suffering in this world despite all talk of equality. Mukhtar's young brother is wrongly accused of flirting with a notorious older girl from the next farm and his family demand justice. This takes the form of a brutal gang rape on Mukhtar who is then expected to kill herself because she has brought shame on her family. Instead she is determined to take her attackers to court.What am amazing woman this is. She was duped into going to the neighbours to publicly negotiate her brother's release and instead is raped by a group of them while the village including her horrified family watch. With their support she decides that she is the victim and reports it to the police who try to bully her into withdrawing her complaint. Her family are intimidated by the rapists and are under protection while Mukhtar can only go out of her home under guard. Even the court system is set up in the rapists favour, though a sympathetic judge does find in her favour. But her struggle continues when the men are released on appeal.This book shocked the living daylights out of me. This woman did NOTHING wrong and she is constantly treated as if she is a criminal. There was no protection from the village elders who are scared of the rapists family, no protection in law and no protection from society. This kind of thing should not be happening but sadly it does happen all over Africa, Asia and the Middle East. This brave woman at the end of the book was still fighting to put her attackers back in prison where they belong.

  • Zenab Ch
    2019-03-21 18:02

    I'm sad that I had to give this book such a low rating. I abandoned the book midway, couldn't read on. Even though Mukhtar Mai is am excellent example for battered, oppressed, wronged women all over the world this story does her and her cause no justice. This book is extremely dry, it seems lost in translation. I don't believe this is the voice of Mukhtar Mai. It seems that the author heard the translated version of the story and then wrote what she thinks Mukhtar Mai would say. Even then she used every cliche there was, no original writing. If an author of Mukhtar Mai's native language had written the book, there might be a lot more substance and emotion and heartache in the story. Mukhtar Mai's story of tragedy, survival, triumph is told in such a matter of fact way, it almost angers me.

  • Maureen
    2019-04-12 12:16

    I was handed this book 1 day & told I had to read it. You were right, Cindy! We take for granted our lifestyles, choices and rights here in Canada when many in other countries don't have basic rights. We assume our children will be educated and continue on in their lives to have careers, families, homes and so much more. This book really opened my eyes to how fortunate we are and how entitled our children are becoming in the world we're creating for them. I will definitely share this story with my children.

  • Jan Ahmed
    2019-03-22 19:53

    Out of all of the books that I enjoy reading, my favorite category is biographies. I read "In the name of Honor," by Mukhtar Mai. This was a wonderful fast paced book which deserves to be read more than it has been. I would recommend it for those who read stories about women and humanities. It is a better read than most of the popular books on this subject. Mukhtar Mai is a woman living in the southern region (Sindh), of Pakistan. Her story begins when she is gang raped by males from another tribe. They have accused her twelve-year-old brother of being indecent with their sister and Mukhtar Mai has come to make amends. Instead of committing suicide, which is widely practiced after such an ordeal, Mukhtar Mai decided to report this to the police. Mai had opposition at almost every turn. She recounts her struggle and the verdict for the men. She does give some information about Pakistan, her battles with the officials and even her dealings with western media. This is not only a story about women's plight in small Pakistani villages. Of course, Mukhtar Mai is an inspiration to all. She has risen above physical and emotional turmoil to survive. Not only is she surviving, but, she uses her experience and any funding that she receives to operate a school for girls. What strikes me most about Mai is that she has committed to stay in Pakistan and help other girls in need. She does not do this for recognition, but to give other women opportunities. I also want to note that it is quite easy to curse the men of the story and the society that would not be totally outraged by this type of degradation. However, I wonder how many noticed that the men of Mai's family (with the exception of a greedy cousin), supported Mai. They did not try to silence her, even when they all experienced death threats. I am not commending the men, so much as I am pointing this out to prove that the attitudes of Pakistani men can also be quite varied and their love for Mai overrode any societal norms or comforts. One criticism is that I wish that the book had been a bit longer and detailed more of Mai's childhood and more of Mai's life after she created the school. I have also read updating stories where she is living quite luxuriously and her own family is now doing the oppressing of other women. This is disheartening. It does cast some doubt about the entire story. I finished this book within a few hours. There are so many books catoring to the stereotypes of oppressive south Asian men that we never know fact from fiction. If this story is true as Mai has presented it, it is a better story than many that have been written on this subject.

  • Emily
    2019-04-13 14:56

    What a remarkable, brave woman. Mukhtar Mai overcame the humiliation of gang rape - a brutal, premeditated attack designed to terrorize her family and cement another family's dominance in the area - and instead of committing suicide as so many rape victims in her situation do, she became an outspoken activist for Pakistani women. Over and over, she speaks of her frustration with her illiteracy at the time of her attack and how important education is for both girls and boys if the situation in her country is to improve.She was fortunate that her family supported her, that she found some sympathetic men in important positions (a judge, some policemen, the village mullah), and that her case caught the attention of the media, first locally, then nationally and finally internationally. But Mukhtar Mai was the one who chose to fight and continuing fighting.She is very clear that Islam is not to blame. The actions of her rapists are not supported by the Koran (which she memorized and taught to village children despite her illiteracy), but by tribal jirgas led by evil, brutal men and by the society which values women only as "objects of exchange." "The form of tribal justice that consists of raping and terrorizing people to maintain control of a village has nothing to do with the Koran."I can't say it better than she does: "How does one survive dishonor? How does one overcome despair? With anger, at first, with an instinct for revenge that resists the tempting solution of death, an instinct that allows one to recover, go forward, act. A stalk of wheat beaten down by a storm can spring up again, or rot where it lies. At first I stood back up alone, and gradually I realized that I am a human being with legitimate rights. I believe in God, I love my village, the Punjab, and my country, and I would like to change things for this country, and all the victims of rape, and future generations of girls. I wasn't really an ardent feminist, although the media considered me one. I became one through experience, because I am a survivor, a simple woman in a world ruled by men. But despising men is not the way to win respect. The solution is to try to fight them as equals."For more book reviews, come visit my blog, Build Enough Bookshelves.

  • Muhammad Ali
    2019-04-19 16:17

    Read this book in 5 hours. This is a story of a woman name Mukhtara, Mukhtara live in a remote village of Pakistan, she was brutally raped by 4 men. Those men belongs to a powerful tribe named Mastoi, but she didn't give up and struggled for the justice. Mukhtara faced many obstacles in her way and at one point the culprits were released on the order of Lahore(capital of Punjab province) High Court due to lack of evidences, this was a serious threat for her life. She personally visited the top officials of Punjab province and request for the immediate arrest of the suspects. The small portion of this book contains information regarding the loopholes in HUDOOD ordinance. Many of the culprits took advantage of those loopholes and released from jail due to lack of eyewitnesses. When this accident was occurred back in 2002, I was in Pakistan. Mukhtara Mai story was everywhere, in news channel, in magazines, in newspaper. But I was unaware of inside of the story. Yesterday I went to the library and saw this book, I grabbed it quickly. I recommend this book to all women specially for those who live in Pakistan.

  • Ayaz Kohli
    2019-03-21 17:53

    Mukhtaran Mai, as she is addressed, the Mai appellation being that of an honour in her culture- the honour of being an elder sister or mother. She earned that honour the hardest way- by losing what her tormentors believed would restore their honours! Honour for honour! just like- eye for an eye! I read this memoir around a decade ago, somewhere during 2008. But the precise scene, the visual that impaled my senses, as though I was a witness to her shame, the moments of her humiliations are still fresh in my mind, like a wound that would never heal. Yes, I can see it as I write this review! And its so disturbing. Yet she rose from the ruins. Yet she took on her devils. Yet she showed her tormentors how Honour should be restored. Yet she brought them to justice and earned her appellation- Mai. A million salute to you brave lady for being so courageous. (Don't go by the number of stars in rating. I can't be biased while rating a book).

  • Hamad
    2019-04-01 19:18

    An easy read that is also very inspirational. Even though it has been translated about 4 times (Saraiki->Urdu->French->English) to get to it's intended audience in the non-French speaking West, it still seems to hold the same power as Mai's relentless pursuance of justice. The reader can almost feel the frustration, anger and fatalism with which Mai takes on her oppressors, and also starts to recognize the systems of oppression which impede any progress toward true equality. Mai recognizes the un-spoken role of women as economic barter in a tribal system, wants to fight this by educating girls in her village to read and write and at the same time responds to criticism from the government that her activities are inherently unpatriotic. As an extra bonus, the reader can get an appreciation of how at least 4 different systems of laws and judicial branches (military, civil, religious and tribal) interact and (sometimes) contradict each other in Pakistan.

  • Sue
    2019-04-20 11:54

    Told in the first person the book concerns the true fight for justice by the author. She talks about the status of women in Pakistan and the way they are controlled by men. Her courage is amazing and she continues to fight for herself, to help others who come to her for help and has also set up a school to educate girls so that they do not grow up illiterate (funded by charity) and boys (state funded) to try and counteract the prevailing culture. The caste system is overlayered with feuds where a woman can be used as a bargaining counter to right wrongs (perceived and actual) and rape is often one of the ways of retribution after which she is expected to commit suicide. An unsettling read.

  • Sharon
    2019-03-28 16:17

    This is the memoir of Mukhtar Mai, a Pakistani woman from the impoverished village of Meerwala, as told to the French writer, Marie-Therese Cuny, and translated from French to English by Linda Coverdale. In June 2002 Mukhtar was gang raped as a form of tribal jusice for indiscretions allegedly committed by her brother. This tradition of a female body being negotiated for honor in a family, actually goes against the official laws of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan but the practice continues in areas where the girls are not educated to know about their rights.This time the survivor has chosen to fight back and the book tells how she became an agent for change for oppressed women around the world.

  • Paige
    2019-04-16 14:58

    Mukhtar Mai is a fucking hero! I love her so much!I read this book in a day--it's 170 pages but the print is large and the pages are fairly small in my edition. It's an easy read when it comes to language--it's the subject matter that's difficult. This book probably wouldn't win any awards for prose, but keep in mind it's been translated three times from Mai's language. I just can't give her story any less than 5 stars. What a wonderful woman she is. I know if I had gone through her position, being granted amnesty from another country would be my first order of business, but she continually refuses--in order to make things better in her own village. Not only is she strong, she's so courageous and kind. <3

  • ❀ Hana
    2019-04-04 19:18

    Aku sungguh-sungguh nak beri lebih banyak bintang untuk buku ini tetapi pengolahan isi kandungan buku ini begitu cetek berbanding isu-isu yang diutarakan - kekejaman ke atas wanita di Pakistan, kebangkitan wanita menentang dominasi tak tentu hala lelaki di dalam dunia Islam, penilaian semula pelaksanaan hukum hudud. Pada aku semua isu ini sangat menarik untuk dikupas dengan lebih mendalam, bukannya menyentuh sekadar di angin lalu sahaja.Apa pun, usaha beliau membuka sebuah sekolah untuk kanak-kanak perempuan di Meerwala, Pakistan (majoriti di situ masih menganut fahaman pendidikan hanyalah untuk lelaki) adalah sesuatu yang luar biasa dan mengagumkan.3.5/5*

  • Sash Chiesa
    2019-04-09 17:00

    For me, the book is truly awe-inspiring. It's not a great literary work or work of art. It accounts for the total disregard of human rights and absence of even a faint light of humanity in certain people or places in our world which then culminates into innumerable human right violations, heinous crimes and unimaginable brutality. It's sad to know that so many things are unimaginable to these people which are taken for granted by us. Throughout this book, every incident has been plainly told and nowhere there is any sensationalism or even for that matter any sympathy-seeking. Mukhtar Mai is certainly a hero and her courage has spoken for others. Much respect for her. Highly recommended.

  • Michelle
    2019-03-23 17:03

    Mukhtar Mai was sentenced to be gang-raped to atone for the accusation that her younger brother made advances toward a higher caste woman. The sentence was carried out and it was expected that Mai would either commit suicide because of the shame or live a defeated life of loneliness as she bore her shame. Instead she fought back through multiple layers of government and against the deeply entrenched values of her culture. She started a school for girls and continues the effort to raise the status of women in her homeland.It's a slim book and a quick read but the display of her personal strength, the lessons learned, and the challenges posed to the reader make it so rich and deep.

  • Pianogirl79
    2019-04-18 15:17

    Incredible. Read it in 24 hours. One thing I really liked was the pacing and language of the book. The woman represented in this book was not literate when it was written. The woman who wrote down the story does an excellent job of writing in a language that reflects Mukhtar Mai's illiteracy. Very quick read, excellent story. Not the deepest book, simply because language doesn't lend that, but definitely increased my awareness about the plight of women who are utterly uneducated and hopelessly dominated by their society.

  • Sally McRogerson
    2019-03-26 17:05

    It's the 21st century! I had to keep reminding myself of that whilst reading this book. Women in Pakistan are still being beaten, raped, murdered and burnt with acid, all in the name of honour!! Is it me?This devout Muslim woman refused to comply with the code and, having been gang raped, a sentence handed down due to an alleged offence of her 12 year old brother, she was supposed to go away and commit suicide. This is the story of what happened when she deviated from that path. It makes hard reading, but putting the book down doesn't make it stop!

  • Sucharita
    2019-04-02 13:11

    The pain, anxiety, helplessness, humiliation, anger, frustration and all the other negative emotions are present in this book. But she did not give up. Even when that would have been the most natural thing to do. She fought on. Ofcourse with the help of others. Who can battle such a war all on one's own. But in the end she won. For herself and for all the other women who give up without a fight. Rape is a henious crime.But rape is not a fault of the woman.Rape is by men who forever need to prove themselves and think by subjugating a woman, they have been successful.

  • Joe
    2019-03-26 17:55

    This is quite a story. It is very easy to read, it took me about 2 hours to read the entire book, and it is one of the most gripping books I've read in a while. It is a story (translated a couple of times) of a woman who has overcome unspeakable horrors in a baffling system to accomplish a lot. This book made me angrier than I have been in a while, and I am familiar with their culture and ridiculously backward system. It's very frustrating to think that in the 21st century, a country that has nuclear technology has self imposed problems like this.

  • Regina
    2019-04-08 17:09

    Powerful story of one woman's journey taking on Muslim men and a corrupt judicial system. One thing I found so interesting is that she actually taught classes on the Quran but she herself could not read. She could only recite from memory what she had been taught. She doesn't actually know that there are passages in the book she's teaching that condone the very behavior that she condemns that has been done to her. So sad that so many live in ignorance of their own religion.

  • Kim
    2019-04-20 16:50

    What an inspiration this book is. Mukhtar was gand raped as punishment for a crime her brother was accused of. rather than commiting suicide, as was expected, she went in search of justice. For a traditional muslim pakistani woman, illiterate and uneducated, this was a huge thing to do. She won and has stared a school in her village for girls because she believes the only way to free women of the violence and mistreatment they face acording to muslim custom is to educate the grils. A must read

  • Kitty Red-Eye
    2019-04-04 12:48

    The way the book is written isn't very engaging, somehow. Matter-of-factly, direct, short sentences. Still I just have to give it four stars, simply because Mukhtar Mai herself has to earn ten out of five stars. This is humanism, this is feminism, this is courage and determination for ya'. A very fast read, due to the book's "simplistic" style, but a story which probably is close to the very definition of "impressive".