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He Named Me Malala is an inspirational piece of literature/documentary that shares the story of a young Pakistani, teenage girl named Malala. When Malala was younger, her father would tell her this story about the girl who saved her country by bravery. Afghanistan and England was at war and there was no hope for Afghanistan. The teenage girl saw her people running away and she ran up onto the mountain and raised her voice, saying “It is better to live like a lion for one day than to live life a slave for hundreds of years” and they responded positively to that. The teenage girl encouraged her people to pursue and lead the army to a great victory, but she was shot and killed on the battlefield. Her name was Malala. Malala was named after this young girl.
Malala Yousafzai is and remains one of the youngest Nobel Peace Prize Laureates ever. After the Taliban tried to kill and ultimately silence her, Malala said no. Malala didn’t give up on herself, her family, friends nor did she give up on millions of girls around the globe who fight every single day for quality education and equality for women’s rights. Malala is a leader in her community and country and she advocates for young girls and women all over the country. Appearing on several talk shows, including The Late Show and meeting with numerous influential celebrities from musicians to President Barack Obama. Malala has traveled all over the world to talk about her book, her life and what exactly made her get into wanting to do what she does and why so at a young age.
As we know the culture and customs in Pakistan are so much more different from that of those that are spread throughout the United States for instance, in certain areas women are not allowed to look men in the eyes, shake their hands, speak to them when they are not spoken to, speak freely, work freely, so on and so forth; Malala as the young brave heart she is won’t allow traditional customs to make her feel less than a human being, less than a woman. Malala feels she have the right to do whatever it is she set her mind to do and education is one of those things. Malala feels as though all children should be afforded the right to get educated and use that education to become something or someone, doesn’t matter if they are male or female. Females have the same rights males do, Malala says. She also feels that not only in her country girls such as herself feel the same way and go through the same issues as she does, but in neighboring countries and countries all over such as Nigeria, Afghanistan, England and so on. That’s truly why and how Malala started the way she did. She felt as though if she felt that way, then surely it has to be come other girls who feel the exact same way.
Education is an important factor in Malala’s speeches because education is everything. Knowledge is everything. Knowledge is power and in those countries where women are looked at as the weaker links, most men feel that they should never have power of any kind; therefore, knowledge is a dangerous weapon in this game. And also, Malala fights for the equality of women and girls all around the world. One thing that stood out to me was when all those girls went missing, Malala went to speak with the parents of the missing girls and she gave them a sense of hope that one day their girls would be returned to them. Although there wasn’t much Malala could do physically, talking to them gave them much solace.
All of this relates back to what we’ve talked about thus far in this semester. I can recall replaying discussions with bell hooks and different people about how our women in this country are not valued enough and then to be black? That makes it so much worse. Everything Malala is doing is similar to what bell hooks is doing with her literature and her advocating. She wants to put the message out that women are precious works of art and are to be looked upon as such. We as women should take or settle for nothing less than the best. We should not be silenced by anyone. If you have something to say, then say it. If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.
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