Two Pulitzer Prize winners expose the most pervasive human rights violation of our era - the oppression of women in the developing world—and tell us what we can do about it.
An old Chinese proverb says “Women hold up half the sky.” Then why do the women of Africa and Asia persistently suffer human rights abuses? Continuing their focus on humanitarian issues, journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn take us to Africa and Asia, where many women live in profoundly dire circumstances—and some succeed against all odds.
A Cambodian teenager is sold into sex slavery; a formerly illiterate woman becomes a surgeon in Addis Ababa. An Ethiopian woman is left for dead after a difficult birth; a gang rape victim galvanizes the international community and creates schools in Pakistan. An Afghan wife is beaten by her husband and mother-in-law; a former Peace Corps volunteer founds an organization that educates and campaigns for women’s rights in Senegal.
Through their powerful true stories, the authors show that the key to progress lies in unleashing women’s potential, that change is possible, and that each of us can play a role in making it happen.
About the Author
NICHOLAS D. KRISTOF and SHERYL WUDUNN were the first married couple to win a Pulitzer Prize for journalism, and WuDunn the first Asian-American to win a Pulitzer. They were foreign correspondents and editors for The New York Times, winning their Pulitzer for coverage of China’s Tiananmen Square democracy protests. At The Times, WuDunn also worked as a television newscaster and a business executive. She now is an investment advisor in New York. Kristof, a Rhodes Scholar, is now an op-ed columnist for The New York Times and earned a second Pulitzer for his columns about genocide in Darfur. The authors live near New York City with their three children.
"Opens our eyes to an enormous humanitarian issue." --Washington Post 10 Best Books of the Year "Vitally important. . . . Heartbreaking, galvanizing, and unforgettable." --Publishers Weekly Top 100 Books of 2009 "This book isn't a sermon. . . . These stories are electrifying and have the effect of breaking down this enormous problem into segments the reader can focus on. Suddenly, these horrendous problems begin to seem solvable . . . Again, this book is not a sermon about victims. Its range is wide, and sometimes it's even funny . . . Half the Sky is a call to arms, a call for help, a call for contributions, but also a call for volunteers. It asks us to open our eyes to this enormous humanitarian issue. It does so with exquisitely crafted prose and sensationally interesting material . . . I really do think this is one of the most important books I have ever reviewed." --Carolyn See, The Washington Post "Passionate yet practical. . . . [Half the Sky] is both stirring and sensible . . . This wonderful book combines a denunciation of horrible abuses with clear-eyed hope and some compelling practical strategies. The courageous women described here, and millions more like them, deserve nothing less." --Martha Nussbaum, The New York Times "Women facing poverty, oppression, and violence are usually viewed as victims. Nick Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn's Half the Sky shows that unimaginable challenges are often met with breathtaking bravery. These stories show us the power and resilience of women who would have every reason to give up but never do. They will be an inspiration for anyone who reads this book, and a model for those fighting for justice around the world. You will not want to put this book down." --Angelina Jolie "If you have always wondered whether you can change the world, read this book. Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn have written a brilliant call to arms that describes one of the transcendent injustices in the world today--the brutal treatment of women. They take you to many countries, introduce you to extraordinary women, and tell you their moving tales. Throughout, the tone is practical not preachy and the book's suggestions as to how you can make a difference are simple, sensible, and yet powerful. The authors vividly describe a terrible reality about the world we live in but they also provide light and hope that we can, in fact, change it." --Fareed Zakaria, author, The Post-American World "I think it's impossible to stand by and do nothing after reading Half the Sky. It does what we need most, it bears witness to the sheer cruelty that mankind can do to mankind." --George Clooney "It's impossible to exaggerate the importance of this book about one of the most serious problems of our time: the worldwide abuse and exploitation of women. In addition to describing the injustices, Kristof and WuDunn show how concerned individuals everywhere are working effectively to empower women and help them overcome adversity. Wonderfully written and vividly descriptive, Half the Sky can and should galvanize support for reform on all levels. Inspiring as it is shocking, this book demands to be read." --Anne Rice "Half the Sky is a passionate and persuasive plea to all of us to rise up and say 'No more!' to the 17th-century abuses to girls and women in the 21st-century world. This is a book that will pierce your heart and arouse your conscience. It is a powerful piece of journalism by two masters of the craft who are tireless in their pursuit of one of the most shameful conditions of our time." --Tom Brokaw "The stories that Kristof and WuDunn share are as powerful as they are heartbreaking. Their insight into gender issues and the role of women in development inspires hope, optimism, and most importantly, the will to change. Both a brutal awakening and an unmistakable call to action, this book should be read by all." --Melinda Gates "An unblinking look at one of the seminal moral challenges of our time. This stirring book is at once a savage indictment of gender inequality in the developing world and an inspiring testament to these women's courage, resilience, and their struggle for hope and recovery. An unexpectedly uplifting read." --Khaled Hosseini, author, The Kite Runner "While we rightly roared at racial apartheid, we act as though gender apartheid is a natural, immutable fact. With absolutely the right Molotov cocktail of on-the-ground reporting and hard social science, Kristof and WuDunn blow up this taboo. . . . A thrilling manifesto for advancing freedom for hundreds of millions of human beings." --Johann Hari, Slate.com "The most important book of the year. . . . Half the Sky is the kind of book that could change the course of history." --William Petrocelli, The Huffington Post "How many books make a significant difference in matters that concern everyone who lives on earth? Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn have certainly written such a book. Half the Sky is the most important book that I have read since Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, published in 1962. . . . Half the Sky is a groundbreaking, eye-opening book, stunning in every sense." --Charles R. Larson, CounterPunch "Urgent. . . . Passionate. . . . Compelling. . . . Half the Sky is a grab-the-reader-by-the-lapels wake-up call." --Bill Williams, The Boston Globe "Superb . . . As Rachel Carson's Silent Spring once catalyzed us to save our birds and better steward our earth, Half the Sky stands to become a classic, spurring us to spare impoverished women these terrors, and elevate them to turn around the future of their nations." --Susan Ager, Cleveland Plain Dealer "Stunning. . . . [Half the Sky] belongs on the 'must-read' list because it offers perspective, insight, and clear-eyed optimism for why and how each of us can and should meet one of the great moral and humanitarian challenges of our times." --Bill Gates, Sr., The Huffington Post"Any review of this book should begin without pretence; in the plainest language. Unadorned. Unembellished. Understandable. It should begin with the five following words: This is an important book! Exclamation indicated." --New Strait Times
Number Of Pages: 296
Published: 1st June 2010
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 20.1 x 13.0 x 2.5
Weight (kg): 0.32