I need help. I need help to understand how and why someone would write a story about how Canadian Women are forcing their beliefs upon Muslim Women. I pasted this chunk below:Alaina disrobes the professional academic, while nonetheless insisting (in reference to Afghanistan) that "Education=peace". There's a bit of a contradiction and some innocence there to be worked through, but it can be done; anyway, I'm impressed that a thirteen-year old can see so clearly the evil of the Western academy's victimary mindset. One might add that it is precisely the white guilt of today's academy that underwrites the postmodern version of the "white man's burden"; on the other hand, the honest recognition of some fundamental cultural differences can be (may be) a way of building more productive, reciprocal, relationships that are not based on guilty assumptions of victimhood. But there will always be some kind of relationship in our global village: one has to be an academic fool to think that crying "hands off Afghanistan" is not just another way of bringing decadent Western desires to bear on the history of that country.At the heart of the relationship between feminism and imperialism is an Orientalist logic that posits Western women as exemplary and emancipated in relation to “Other” (Afro-Asian/colonized) women, thereby charging the former with the responsibility of saving the latter from their backwards (i.e. Muslim), uncivilized cultures.And even though I don’t understand at all the words Orientalist or feminism theory, I do understand what this chunk means, and now I want to speak my truth.
I am the founder of Little Women for Little Women in Afghanistan. I founded this organization 3 years ago, when I was 9 years old. In the fall of 2006, I found out that the privileges that I have, other girls in our world don’t get. I learned about this when I went with my Mom to listen to journalist, author and human rights activist, Sally Armstrong speak about Afghanistan. She told stories about the terrible things that happen to little girls in Afghanistan. I was so moved. It was so upsetting to me that these girls weren’t able to exercise their rights. They were not able to go to school and sometimes they didn’t go to school because they were afraid they would be hurt or even killed.
No one will ever tell me that Muslim women or any women think it’s ok to not be allowed to get educated or to have their daughters sold off at 8 years old or traded off at 4 years old because of cultural beliefs. No one will tell me that women in Afghanistan think it is ok for their daughters to have acid thrown in their faces. It makes me ill to think a 4 year old girl must sleep in a barn and get raped daily by old men. It’s sick and wrong and I don’t care who calls me an Orientalist or whatever I will keep raising money to educate girls and women in Afghanistan and I will keep writing letters and sending them in the back pack of my friend Lauryn Oates as she works so bravely on the ground helping women and girls learn what it is to exercise their rights. I believe in human rights so I believe everyone has the right their own opinion, I just wish that the energy that was used to write that story, that is just not true, could have been used to educate a girl in Afghanistan. That’s what the girls truly want. That’s what the Women in Afghanistan truly want. I have a drawer full of letters from them that says just that.
Monday, April 05, 2010
When a 13-year old makes more sense than a professional academic, you know...
Terry Glavin introduces us to Alaina Podmorow's Butterflies and Wheels Article: