Read this book recently, reminded me of how much I take for granted every day: Freedom of speech. Freedom of religion. The freedom to go to the outside without needing a male escort. And the right to get an education, regardless of gender.
"I was a girl in a place where rifles/guns are fired in celebration of a son, while daughters are hidden away behind a curtain, their role in life simply to make food and give birth to children."
Malala, who is now 23,is an outspoken advocate girl who ask for education right to have the same right to go to school as boys. In her native country Pakistan, she lost that ability when the Taliban took over: "I was 10 when the Taliban arrived to our valley. It seemed to us that the Taliban arrived in the night just like vampires. They came in groups, armed with knives and Kalashnikovs . They looked so dark and dirty and that my father's friend defined them as 'people deprived of baths and barbers.'"
The Taliban bombing schools and decreed that girls couldn't get an education. Malala's father was a school principal and always encouraged her to speak out. She was only 15 at the time, but threats were made against her and her family. And in October 2012, when she was in the school bus with her friends, a man with a gun climbed aboard the vehicle and shooted Malala in the head.
Amazingly, Malala survived the bullet and was found able to recover. She and her family currently living in England, but Malala describes about how much she misses her home country and wishes she could return to be with her friends. Her amiableness was such that she did not wish revenge on her attacker, and instead she prays for peace.
"I thank GOD, for the hardworking doctors, for my recovery and for sending us to this world where we mostly struggle for our survival. Some people choose good ways and some choose bad ways. One man's bullet hit me. It swelled my brain, stole my hearing and cut the nerve of my left face in the space of a second. And after that one second there were billions of people praying for my life and extremely talented doctors who gave me my life back. I was a good girl. In my heart I had only wish to help people."
Malala's story is both painful, heartbreaking and inspiring as well. I really appreciates her courage and her tenacity, and also hope that her Nation will one day find Peace. "Why are we Muslims fighting with each other? We need to focus on practical issues. We have millions of people in our nation who are illiterate, and many women have no education at all. We live in a place where schools are incinerated. We have no electricity supply. Not a single day passes without kill of at least one Pakistani."
The novel is lovingly and kindly written, and I also admired her stories about the history of Pakistan and her peoples, the Pashtuns. While reading the book I found that I knew more about the history of other Nation in the region, such as Afghanistan, Iran and and as well as India, than I did know about Pakistan, and it was very informative. I would highly recommend this novel to anyone interested in women's rights, current events, history or inspirational memoirs and biographies.
"Today we all talk about education is our basic right but we just do talk. Not just in the West; Islam too has given us this right. Islam says every girl and every boy should go to school. In the Quran it is written, God wants us to have knowledge. He wants us to know why the sky is blue and about oceans and stars . The Taliban could take our pens and books and can't deprived us from getting education, but they couldn't stop our minds from thinking."
Although I had heard about Malala before reading the book, I was not familiar with her story. Now that I have read it, I believe that her story is one everyone should know and that she is a voice everyone should listen to. Her book should be used in classes around the world. It is extremely powerful, and Malala is someone we can all learn from. When reading the book, you easily forget that Malala was just a child when most of these events happened. Most of us will not show one hundredth of her courage in our lifetime. She used her grief and her tragic past to build a cause and help solve the problems she sees as the most pressing. The fight is still going on and needs our attention, and Malala’s book is a testament to the power each and every one of us has to make the world a more equal place.