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.
“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
“Cassandra Campbell’s somber reading couldn’t be more attuned to the authors’ mission as she interprets writing that is as intense as it gets. Her impressive depth carries listeners through the book's gruesome lows and inspiring highs, and ultimately to a place where they cannot dismiss this human rights tragedy.”
—AudioFile [Earphones Award Winner]
“I really do think this is one of the most important books I have ever reviewed.”
—Carolyn See, The Washington Post
—Library Journal [Starred Review]