“The extremists have shown what frightens them most — a girl with a book.” This was tweeted by Malala Yousafzai when multiple girl schools were set on fire in Pakistan. There are over 131 million girls out of school. Why? Because girls are unworthy? Because girls are useless? Because girls are stupid? Or because girls in power are frightening? Or because girls are scary? Or because girls are smart enough to know their worth and fight back?
Girl Rising is a documentary that follow nine girls from around the globe sharing their stories and challenges. The movie was published March 7, 2013 in USA and was directed by Richard E. Robbins. The nine girls we follow are Sokha, Wadley, Suma, Yasmin, Azmera, Ruksana, Senna, Mariama and Amin.
The movie Girl Rising is built up with short stories from each girl and afterwards shows us facts about each issue girls challenge like for example the number of girls that does not have access to school. I think the facts and the numbers the movie gives us can be shocking for those who are not familiar with this issue. The message will make people more aware of how millions of humans are going through this and we get to see the girl’s emotions and feelings and not just the story. I liked how the movie showed small clips of the girls lives because that made it easier to see their story. It also made it more interesting than to just see numbers and facts, and with the clips it made the documentary feel like a film. It’s hard to say which of the girl’s story who gave the most impact on me when all the stories are so important and so moving. I found Suma’s story from Nepal very interesting and touching, the fact that she was working as basically a slave was quite shocking for me in the beginning. Her story shows her being sent off as a six-year-old to work for a master. She worked from 4 in the morning to late at night and her chores was cleaning the house, wash dishes, look after both the goat’s and children. Suma had a total of three masters and her role was called “Kumari”, and with the help of a teacher she later realized it was in fact slavery. Suma described her wanting to go back to her family but, thinking of how they also suffered she felt weak and felt that she couldn’t ask for that. This may be why this lasted over such a long period. Suma therefore no longer looked at herself as a victim after. From the impression that I got from the girls, they do not consider themselves as victims and I think that is because of the culture and traditions. When something has been the same way for decades it’s easier to accept it since that’s how it’s always been. Norway is such a good country when it comes to human rights, gender equality, school access that we literally feel the need to make up our own issues. As the fact that people take a buttlift and that gives us Norway’s main issue when it comes to social media. Therefore, it’s hard to imagine empathizing when I personally have no idea how to even imagine their life. Thinking of my life as having school access, having a job, a family and then trying to put myself in a situation where I don’t even have the right to go to school and the only job I could a have would have been as a “Kumari” makes me speechless since I can’t even imagine their feelings. I think it’s easier sympathizing with them since its quite impossible putting myself in their situation and therefore, it’s easier feeling sorry for them.
“One girl with courage is a revolution” is a phrase that fits great for this movie. Take Suma for example, her courage to try to stop others from having “Kumari”. She told that she was the last in her family to be working as a slave and now was stopping others in her town from keeping young girls as “Kumari”. This is courage, and this is revolution. Having girls like Suma fight for themselves and making them learn the laws and human rights is apparently scary. A girl with a book can make a revolution and weak power-hungry men should be afraid.
“The extremists have shown what frightens them most — a girl with a book.”- https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/18/world/asia/pakistan-girls-schools-fire.html?action=click&module=In%20Other%20News&pgtype=Homepage&action=click&module=News&pgtype=Homepage
Facts- 131 million girls – https://girlrising.org/