In The Name of Honor
Mukhtar Mai with Marie-Thérèse Cuny
translated by Linda Coverdale Introduction
In June of 2002, Mukhtaran Bibi, a young woman living in a small village in Pakistan was brought before her village council to plead forgiveness for a false charge against her young brother. In a shocking abuse of power, the council ordered her gang-raped by four men as retribution. Choosing not to kill herself, as many dishonored women would, she opted instead to fight back with the only weapon at her disposal - the truth. Speaking fearlessly to journalists and government officials, she was able to bring her attackers to trial and win a verdict that struck a blow against a barbaric tradition of violence towards women. Starting with money given her by the government, Bibi opened a school for both boys and girls in her native village, pouring her passion into educating those who would be otherwise powerless. She became Mukhtar Mai, "beloved older sister" to her students, and a hero to those who champion human rights throughout the world. Her struggles did not end there, however, and so here she tells her story, further empowering the women of Pakistan by continuing to spreading her truth. Reading Guide
1) Mai describes her shifting thoughts after the rape, from numb devastation and plans for suicide into determination for justice. What were the personal and cultural factors that led to her suicidal thoughts?