10 Dec 2014

Girls raised as boys in Afghanistan

From Nine To Noon, 10:10 am on 10 December 2014

Nordberg Jenny Magnus Forsberg

Jenny Nordberg by Magnus Forsberg.

The Author of ‘The Underground Girls of Kabul’ Jenny Nordberg says an Afghani politician who is the mother of four girls was told that “A woman without a son in Afghanistan isn’t worth anything"

Jenny Nordberg book uncovers the hidden true story of Afghan girls masquerading as boys, for safety, freedom and even social status. A practice known as bacha posh.

In 2010, she broke the story of bacha posh... outlining that some girls in Afghanistan are disguised as boys. Her piece made the front page of  The New York Times and The International Herald Tribune.

Her original research for the story inspired her to write the book The Underground Girls of Kabul - the hidden lives of Afghan girls disguised as boys.

By delving further into the practice she has revealed deep gender segregation and resistance among women in Afghanistan.

Jenny Nordberg is currently the U.S. and Foreign Affairs Columnist for a Swedish national newspaper. She talks to Kathryn Ryan.