By: Dawn B
Editor: Maia Lamdany
Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide is a best selling book written by New York Times husband and wife duo- Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. Both these Pulitzer prize winners specialize in reporting on human rights abuses. While traveling the world, they noticed that there was one issue that kept appearing-the oppression of women.
Half the Sky was then made into a film and was shown in a four part series for international television and PBS. The film covers women and girls from Afghanistan, Cambodia, India, Kenya, Liberia, Pakistan, Somaliland, the U.S. and Vietnam. The documentary features several different women and girls and the struggles that they have experienced. These include sex trafficking, abduction, abuse, barriers to education, and the role of poverty and cultural traditions. Alongside them include several actors including: America Ferrera, Diane Lane, Eva Mendes, Meg Ryan, Gabrielle Union, and Olivia Wilde.
This film not only speaks to the oppression that women and girls have experienced, but it also shows how they have been able to better themselves and rise above adversity. Once given access to economic opportunities and education, these women and girls have had the opportunity to have a better future.
But the film has not just stopped there…it has been turned into a movement. Half the Sky is working towards making others aware of the issues that women and girls face around the world. They have done this by using videos and games as educational tools, and partnering up with different organizations.
Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn have shined a light on the challenges that women and girls experience every day, bringing these issues to the forefront and allowing the public to be a part of the solution. Take some time to watch out the film, read the book, and check out the website!