Saturday, January 12, 2013

The most dangerous job on earth

This blog is usually about women from the past who have done amazing things and deserve to be more widely recognised but an excellent feature article written by Matt Warren in the latest edition of UK magazine “The Lady”, reinforces the fact that women’s history is being written around the world every day and these extraordinary Afghani policewomen are adding to the current chapter.  Click here to read the article.  

But being women does not make them immune to living under the extreme pressures of their jobs, plus the coercion, corruption and conflicts of loyalty that have been reflected in the growing green on blue” assassinations by rogue officers, with one of the most recent being perpetrated by one of these policewomen. This UK Daily Telegraph article suggests that the woman was an Iranian who suffered a psychological breakdown and was not related to her membership of an opposition group.  In a country like Afghanistan no-one can ever be sure of the truth, but the dedication and bravery of the majority of these women should not be underestimated.

Photo: AFP

Friday, January 4, 2013

The Only Woman in the Room

Sometimes you come across a news story that is important to women’s history and you ask yourself, “Why didn’t I know this before?”
Such is the case with this report from the New York Times about Beate Gordon, the “unsung heroine of Japanese women’s rights” who has only just died.
It makes me wonder how many other women there are - some of them still living - who have been involved in ground-breaking advancement in the rights of women in all corners of the world and who have either been forgotten, deliberately ignored or sidelined.
I am sorry, Beate, that I knew nothing of your admirable life and achievements until now, although I am glad others are keeping your legacy going.
Beate wrote her biography in 1999. It seems to be out of print but hopefully it will now be reissued.
Poster from the 2004 Japanese film

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