Thursday, April 27, 2006
  Shirin Ebadi
I have mentioned Muslim women leaders on several occasions. Here's one every one should know...

Shirin Ebadi is an Iranian lawyer, former judge, and Nobel Peace Prize winner. She is known for defending women accused of such "crimes" as being raped, as well victims of state violence. In a country where the government acknowledges that it has at times assassinated its opponents, that means a whole lot more than it does in some countries.

Shirin's autobiography -- Iran awakening -- has just been published and I'm currently deep in the middle of the book. It is lyrical, intelligent, and brutally honest. Brutal in the sense that Ebadi does not hesitate to reveal her own faults, her own naivete, and her mistakes in judgement. Nor she does not hesitate to call a spade a spade when it comes to the Islamic Revolution and its lawlessness.

The book is also a fascinating look into the heart of the Iranian opposition. Ebadi is literate and her voice speaks to Americans with a fluency and ease that surprised me. (Excellent translation helps, I am sure, but even the best translator cannot turn dreck into poetry.) It is a voice that many feminists will relate to, with it's concern for women's empowerment.

And it tells a story that many of us have never heard -- the story of those who had misgivings about the Islamic revolution from day one, who have struggled to reel in Iranian theocracy, and bring reform to the government.

I highly recommend this book. 1) because Shirin is a woman you should know. 2) because the story she tells is fascinating 3) because this version of the Iranian Revolution is rarely told in American society and 4) because, with tensions between Iran and the US at an all time high, anything that humanizes Iranians, and reminds us that Iran is not a monolith of religious fanatics, is a thing that works towards peace and away from confrontation and war.
 
Comments:
The way you describe Ebadi is very adequate to my impressions on seeing her performance at Columbia Univ. recently while browsing the book she published in rather controversial publishing house and was criticised for that by someone in the audience and she didn't shy away but took all resposability for writing (in eng she doesn't know) it and publishing here which was a legal scharade to overcome.

VIEW at Technologos Logosphere the principal figures that epitomise the religeous aspects or alternative views as Ebadi and Aumann, Nobel prize winners, on the looming global war or confrontation of civilizations which imposed on us by media
I've listened to Shirin Ebadi at NYC while she had presented her book recently and found her being an authentic, credible and responsible to what she has to say or to write. True, she might be playing a devil's advocate game for Iran's nation and even clerical regim as such in the nuclear confrontantion reminiscent of Cold War times.
However, she is definitely knows why and what she's up to taking
this gamble being a genuine Human Rights Advocate for political prisoners and definitely not a politician with powerseeking ambitions.
At VITRUVIUS Technologos Twin Videosphere you may view newsreals on the problem of Middle East as 'WAR, TERROR AND PIACE' THEME that relevant to the concerns
 
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Progressive Muslim, feminist, mom, writer, mystic, lover of the universe and Doug Schmidt, cellist, theologian and imam.


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Cane River
An interesting exploration of the gradual whiting of a family through slavery to modern days.

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Causes Worth Supporting

This is just a short list -- a few of my favorites.

English Language Islamic Fiction. We need more of it. Lots more.
Pay a Teacher's Salary in Afghanistan. The Hunger site actually has a lot of worthwhile programs. You can find them all here .
Muslims for Progressive Values. My organization. We can always use donations, of time or money!
Human Rights Campaign for the glbt community
National Religious Campaign Against Torture
The ACLU I'm a card carrying member. Hope you'll become one too.
MoveOn.org. The organization that has done the most, as far as I can tell, to pull the countries progressive side together.
Network of Spiritual Progressives. Working to reclaim religion and morality for the religious left.

Blogs Worth Reading

Wanda Campbell also known as Nochipa A very gifted poet and a gentle, compassionate soul. Nochipa and I are on the same page on sooooo many things
Writeous Sister Aminah Hernandez, she's got some excellent latino pieces and always has good writing info on her blog.
Sister Scorpion aka Leila Montour - Leila is a fount of energy, quirky humor, and bad attitude. She's also a talented poet.
Muhajabah Very interesting commentary here. I don't always agree with her, but her pieces are always thought-provoking.
Georgie Dowdell Georgie is a great writer and a good friend.
Louise Marley Another great writer. I think Louise is one of the best sf writers exploring faith themes.
Ink in My Coffee Devon Ellington (who has numerous aliases) who is also the editor of Circadian Poems. A truly inspiring woman with a seemingly endless supply of energy.
Ethnically Incorrect With a name like that, isn't a given I'm going to enjoy this writer?
Freedom from the Mundane Colin Galbraith, another excellent writer, from Scotland.
The Scruffy Dog Review This is a new e-zine with an ecclectic mix of fiction, poetry, and non-fic, some really enjoyable pieces here.
Ramblings of a Suburban Soccer Mom Lara, another gentle soul, very thoughtful.
Circadian Poems A journal of poetry, new stuff up all the time.
Ye Olde Inkwell Michelle writes romance and is one of my writing buddies.
Muhammad Michael Knight The original punk Muslim writer. Like him or love him, Mike is always coming up with the unexpected.

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