American University of Culture and Education ± Tyre Campus

____________________________________________________ Advanced Academic English Spring Semester 2010 / 2011

A Research Report on

The Inequality of the Afghan Woman

Instructor: Ms. Khulud Miliji By: Zeina Saleh

women worldwide have made big steps towards equality. However. She felt the warmth of his head as she touched him. Turpeki hesitated and started running when the guard fired several rounds of Kalashnikovs at her. 2 . They now have the same chance as men to get an education. This research paper will discuss the Afghan women¶s mandatory dress code. She carefully wrapped herself with the blue colored burqa making sure all her clothes were covered and in compliance with the rules of the Taliban. Realizing that her baby was terribly ill. On the way. she decided to take him to the local hospital located a few blocks away from her house. obtaining access to health care and many more. Introduction Over the last few decades. they have voting rights and equal opportunities at jobs. He was sweaty and pale. Her husband was executed by the Taliban last year and she had no brothers to accompany her. took power in the late 1990s. she heard a teenage Taliban guard shrieking at her. their deprivation of getting an education and job and the violence committed against them. getting an education. Women who violate the enforced law face public beatings and execution. she only had no other choice.The Inequality of the Afghan Woman It was just like any other Sunday for Turpeki. She had finished her daily chores around the house and went to check on her toddler in his bed room. Ever since Taliban. this is not the case for the Afghan women. an ³Islamist´ militia group. Turpeki wasn¶t intending to get physically assaulted for appearing in public without a mahram (a brother or a husband) and she certainly wasn¶t feeling rebellious. the women of Afghanistan were stripped of all their basic rights such as having a job.

the whole group of men joined in. faces and identities. Listening to all the curses and feeling the rocks bruising her skin. A woman took the first shot and began pelting her with stones. jewelry. women are prohibited to wear makeup." she says. a head to toe blue garment with mesh over the eyes which practically hides all the women's bodies. This is demonstrated in Osema¶s story. She wanted to buy a bag of onions from the local market located a few streets away from her house. she decided to wear her embroidered green scarf which covers only her hair instead. she felt disoriented and fell on the scorching sand. On the way there. Rahima Zafar Staniczai. when Osema walks through the roads of the city.Mandatory Dress Code ³The face of a woman is a source of corruption for men not related to them ". The children around wanted to have some fun so they joined in by kicking up swirls of yellow sand at her. only her dark natural eyelashes are visible through a burka. a Taliban spokesperson once said. Soon after. colorful or stylish clothes. head of the Rabia Balkhi Hospital for women. this mentality has led the religious leadership to force all women to wear a burka. "They would hit us and spit on us. Its main purpose is to make the women non-existent and invisible to men. Aside from the burqa. She also had a hint of red lipstick on to beautify her dull depressed face. 3 . Consequently. white socks and shoes and high heeled shoes. Today. She used to get beaten in the streets whenever she was spotted rushing to work uncovered. Another incident similar to this occurred with Dr. a crowd of men started forming around her. sheer stockings. Plucked eyebrows and short hair is also considered as committing a crime. She didn¶t like wearing the burqa as she felt suffocated in it. Feeling rebellious. nail polish. and then we would have to come in to the hospital to do our work.

The United Nations estimates that in Kabul today. 4 . The Afghan female teachers provide blackboards which were originally closet doors. their education gets wasted. James E. why educate women and girls when they¶re meant to be breeding machines? Before establishing the law prohibiting females exceeding the age of eight from having an education or an occupation. In fact. She was then imprisoned. cruel sanctions will be implemented. you educate an entire family. The parents and the teachers are completely aware that if caught. incomes were reduced. this saying is not believed by the Taliban. A cruel incident occurred with one teacher who was running an informal school in her house. you educate an individual but if you educate a woman. Apparently. A few home schools quietly and courageously operate to educate girls. So. The children sit on the floors and are provided few supplies and torn-out books.Deprivation of an Education / Job ³If you educate a man. Aggrey. as a result. only a few thousand girls out of a total population of 2 million are receiving some kind of schooling. When this secret school was discovered. The Taliban also threatened to stone her family publicly if she refused to sign a declaration of loyalty to the Taliban and their unjust laws. the militia beat the children and threw her down the stairs breaking her leg. as a result. the University of Kabul had several thousands of female students and occupations were filled in different capacities by women. the widows who were the sole providers for their families were left with no income at all. Most of them were forced to quit their schools and leave their jobs except for those who worked within the medical field. educating the boys is a priority because girls get married and stay at home thus. K. A spokesman of the ³Islamic´ Militia declared that his movement wasn¶t against educating women but because resources are scarce.´ Dr.

The Taliban encourage marriage to girls under the age of 16. We can study with or without their consent. running away temporarily grants them peace. a Taliban member splashed some girls with acid while on the way to their all girls¶ school. on the 13th of November 2008. This is demonstrated in G. Qasida aged 26. As a result. Bibi¶s story. and in the graveyard. raping. this intolerable life has pushed many wives to flee their husband¶s houses. She smuggled books in the street hidden under her burqa with the hopes of not getting caught. "There are only two places for Afghan women-in her husband's house. This mentality has led women to commit selfimmolation and suicide. poisonous gas was sprayed in a school leading to dozens of girls falling ill. When Taliban forced females to stop attending classes. under-aged marriage. She was forced into marrying him at the age of sixteen to 5 . Schools are also set on fire periodically. and in most cases to men four times their age." Some of the violence that the Afghan women and girls face include. an engineering student at the Kabul University. "I really think it's up to each woman to decide. Although they have expectations of eventually getting caught and facing sanctions. beatings by in-laws and spouses.On the 25th of May 2011. Violence Against Afghan Women "When a bird is sitting in a tree and no one throws a stone at it. Amnesty International reported that 80 percent of Afghan marriages are considered by force." she says.´ a Taliban leader says. The Afghan wife endures regular beatings and verbal abuse from her spouse or in-laws. decided to continue her studies at one of her female teacher¶s house." a sympathetic prison guard says. and widow sales. She is imprisoned for committing the ³crime´ of running away from her husband who viciously used to beat her through-out their nine-year marriage. kidnappings. Similarly. it will not leave its nest. "The same can be said of the women here.

"It's difficult when a man and women really love each other here. Feeling the impossibility of getting married with the father¶s consent. This led her to drench herself in cooking fuel and lighting a match.settle a dispute over a land between the two families. is the story of 18 year old Fawzia. In Conclusion: I do acknowledge the fact that women worldwide suffer from inequality." says Gulwari. the couple took the decision of running away. she felt trapped. however." Another. to move to Iran for good. They eventually got caught and are now imprisoned. She eventually got caught by the police and is now behind bars for a crime that is merely considered a crime elsewhere. They plan as soon as they get released. 18-year-old Gulwari. who fell in love with a young man whom her father rejected. no woman endures the suffering like the Afghan women do. they are reduced to mere objects and thus depriving them of their basic human rights. Having no rules to protect them against discrimination and mistreatment. "Now I'm trapped. Similarly. 6 . After her multiple unheard cries and complaints to her parents about getting beaten routinely by her husband and in-laws.

Ban on women dealing with male shopkeepers.Ban on women laughing loudly.Ban on women being treated by male doctors. 8. brother or husband). (Taliban have converted girls' schools into religious seminaries.) 6. 3. (Many women with painted nails have had fingers cut off). 12.Requirement that women wear a long veil (Burqa).Whipping of women in public for having non-covered ankles. 5.Complete ban on women's activity outside the home unless accompanied by a mahram (close male relative such as a father. beating and verbal abuse of women not clothed in accordance with Taliban rules. universities or any other educational institution. engineers and most professionals.Ban on women studying at schools.Whipping. 4.Public stoning of women accused of having sex outside marriage.Complete ban on women's work outside the home. (No stranger should hear a woman's voice). or of women unaccompanied by a mahram. (A number of lovers are stoned to death under this rule). Only a few female doctors and nurses are allowed to work in some hospitals in Kabul. 7.Ban on the use of cosmetics. which also applies to female teachers. 2. 9. which covers them from head to toe. 7 .Ban on women talking or shaking hands with non-mahram males. 11.Taliban restrictions and mistreatment of women include the: 1. 10.

In Taliban terms. 25.Ban on women gathering for festive occasions such as the Eids. 8 . or for any recreational purpose.Ban on women playing sports or entering a sport center or club. these are "sexually attracting colors. 15.Ban on women wearing high heel shoes. 26.Ban on women's presence in radio.Ban on males and females traveling on the same bus. 16. 17. 21." For example.Compulsory painting of all windows.Ban on women riding bicycles or motorcycles. so women can not be seen from outside their homes. 24. 22. (A man must not hear a woman's footsteps.) 14. "women's garden" has been renamed "spring garden". which would produce sound while walking. Public buses have now been designated "males only" (or "females only").Ban on women appearing on the balconies of their apartments or houses.Ban on women washing clothes next to rivers or in a public place.Ban on women riding in a taxi without a mahram. 20.Ban on women's wearing brightly colored clothes. even with their mahrams. 23. 18. television or public gatherings of any kind." 19.13.Modification of all place names including the word "women.Ban on female public baths.Ban on male tailors taking women's measurements or sewing women's clothes.

or hung on the walls of houses and shops 9 . even under a burqa.Ban on flared (wide) pant-legs. 29.Ban on women's pictures printed in newspapers and books.27.Ban on the photographing or filming of women. 28.

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