In this stunningly written book, a Western trained Muslim doctor brings alive what it means for a woman to live in the Saudi Kingdom I ve rarely experienced so vividly the shunning and shaming, racism and anti Semitism, but the surprise is how Dr Ahmed also finds tenderness at the tattered edges of extremism, and a life changing pilgrimage back to her Muslim faith Gail SheehyThe decisions that change your life are often the most impulsive ones.Unexpectedly denied a visa to remain in the United States, Qanta Ahmed, a young British Muslim doctor, becomes an outcast in motion On a whim, she accepts an exciting position in Saudi Arabia This is not just a new job this is a chance at adventure in an exotic land she thinks she understands, a place she hopes she will belong What she discovers is vastly different The Kingdom is a world apart, a land of unparralled contrast She finds rejection and scorn in the places she believed would most embrace her, but also humor, honesty, loyalty and love And for Qanta, than anything, it is a land of opportunity A place where she discovers what it takes for one woman to recreate herself in the land of invisible women....
|Title||:||In the Land of Invisible Women: A Female Doctor's Journey in the Saudi Kingdom|
|Number of Pages||:||201 Pages|
|File Size||:||679 KB|
|Status||:||Available For Download|
|Last checked||:||21 Minutes ago!|
In the Land of Invisible Women: A Female Doctor's Journey in the Saudi Kingdom Reviews
This is a book club selection that I must read. It is a tough go just because it is a disturbing topic. To think that women are treated as a bunch of 'black bundles' all sitting together in the airport...it is just too disturbing. I did learn much that should be given a wider distribution. I did not know that until the 1970's women in Saudi Arabia had all manner of privileges. It was the Saudi royal family's fear that the Wahabi sect could sieze their power that caused a pandering to the 'dark side' that covered women in black polyester and began their dreadful treatment. This pandering to the extremists has been the cause of so much of the destruction in that part of the world. May we all learn from that lesson.
I read this book not so much to learn about Dr. Qanta Ahmed's experience, but to recall my own. I wanted to say, "Yes! Yes! That's the way it was!" at every turn of the page, and I was able to do so. Her descriptions of sights, scents, sounds, clothing, surroundings and people are spot-on accurate. Perhaps I might have found those details excessive, had I not lived in Riyadh for twelve years, worked in a hospital, and experienced much of what she experienced. Her narrative portrays objective truth, for her and for me and for many women like us-- Westernized Muslims who have lived and worked in a Riyadh hospital during the 1980s and 90s.
Sometimes this book frustrated me. For instance, when the narrator didn't do research on Saudi culture before moving there from NYC, because she thought being Muslim was all she needed to fit in. (For instance, she waited until she was on the plane to check if her outfit was appropriate.) The would be like me saying I don't need to do research before moving to North Korea, because I'm an atheist, so it'll all be fine.
I have been curious about Muslim women and had some preconceived notions of what they were like. I thought they were treated much like slaves were treated and they accepted the abuse and subjugation with a sad dismissal. I was glad to know that they are like the rest of us in many ways and there are actually feminists in their ranks. I have to wonder exactly when the men were allowed to change Islam to enslave them so? Why did they put up with it? How could independent women and open-minded men allow this to happen? The book relates some of this, but not all. I realized the book relayed a spiritual awakening for Qanta. I was happy to see that she learned about her religion, but I wonder why she wasn't taught about this earlier? She isn't alone in this. I realized in all religions, there are people who do not ask questions or learn for themselves. It was such a relief to know she questioned the answers at times and had many questions about everything there.