Underground Girls of Kabul, The

Nordberg, Jenny

  13 Reviews

When the birth of a boy is a cause for celebration and the birth of a girl the absolute opposite, families in patriarchal Afghanistan must survive this cultural reality the best way they can. Bacha posh - a daughter raised as a son - is a solution that enables families to maintain their honour. From childhood and puberty to marriage and beyond, this book investigates the experience of bacha posh, their place in history and the outcomes for them and their families.

Lifting the lid on the hidden lives of Afghani women this is a thought-provoking and profoundly moving story from an award winning journalist. [Small font]



CHCH 009
The group really enjoyed the thought-provoking aspects of the book. The structure and grammar upset some.
AUCK 248
Some interesting insights. Not an easy read but very thought-provoking. And to think this sort of thing is happening within the last 20 years! Generated lots of discussion around gender and cultural diversity. Made us realise and appreciate our freedoms!
Most of us read this one. Enjoyed by most. Offers a very interesting view into another culture and their values around gender. I loved the first person stories of the girls raised as boys and their subsequent merging back into the female role. Lots of interesting conversations arose from this book.
We all found this book extremely interesting and disturbing. Well worth reading.
We found the book enlightening, never having heard of 'Bacha Posh'. The author gave a very revealing picture of life for Afghani women, but we felt the culture is so deeply rooted that nothing will change for years - if ever. But perhaps we are too ready to judge when we only have our own culture to compare with theirs
WELL 036
The group enjoyed this book - it stimulated discussion on patriarchal societies and how changes could be made. The women in the book were strong and innovative in coping with their individual situations.
Informative (and distressing) content. Most thought the book needed some editing and better structure.
CHCH 447
An inspiring and thought-provoking book which made for stimulating discussion. Journalism rather than a novel. Not a well written book, very repetitive and not an easy read. Useful reading the notes. A motivating and excellent discussion.
AUCK 058
All in the group thought the material was interesting but somewhat repetitive. While some felt the insights and information made it worth reading, others felt it was depressing and found the book difficult to read.
AUCK 065
We felt it was challenging and made us all open our eyes. None of us knew about the system of 'bacha posh'. The questions were challenging too, and we had a spirited discussion. What we found interesting was that the girls fared better under communism.
AUCK 116
A challenging book that provided great discussion. It was very repetitive, but gave a very interesting insight into the life of women there. We all thought how lucky we were to live the lives we lead, and (rather depressingly) that the lives of Afghani women would not change soon.
GISB 003
All of our group was highly energised by this book. We found it extremely interesting and eye opening. It fitted well with 'A Thousand Splendid Suns' also read this year. No one could imagine living the life of an Afghani woman, but we did reflect on how the lives of our Victorian great grandmothers were restricted, and how far Western women have moved in time.
CHCH 206
We all were very pleased to read this book. It provoked a very lively discussion. We were astounded to learn how different lives can be in different parts of the world and it reiterated how fortunate we are. We are all recommending this to others.