She has no identity, no value.
If a woman has value, it is because of her body.
A half-figure with a fake smile.
Symbolic. Silent. Hidden. Not real.
Woman is lost in history.
I am a woman surrounded in night.
But I will fight the darkness.
I will break it down.


Woman Is Lost in History II

Here in Afghanistan, the word “humanity” has lost its meaning when it comes to the treatment of women. In this land many women live as slaves, withstanding cruelty, contempt, and abuse—just for a bit of bread and a place to live. Many women in abusive marriages cannot leave their husbands’ homes because they have no money of their own and nowhere to go.

Many women in Afghanistan cannot live in freedom. They must be silent, obedient, covered, hidden. They wear fake smiles to hide their pain. They know no laughter. Independent women are mocked as “fancy women” and accused of selling their bodies to men.

Men, shipwrecked in sin and blame, judge innocent women and then punish them for the crime of being female. They burn women like Farkhunda. They stone women like Rukhshana.

I’m like a broken wind, a woman in this land.

By Zahra Ab.

Photo by Amina Moravej