4 August - 7 August 2014
Copyright restrictions prevent us from making these programmes available as audio on demand or podcasts.
Monday 4 August: Ama Ata Aidoo - Ghanaian Author
Zainab Bedawi speaks to the acclaimed Ghanaian writer Ama Ata Aidoo who has arguably done more than any other writer to depict and celebrate the condition of women in Africa, in books such as The Dilemma of a Ghost, and Changes. She is opposed to what she has described as a 'Western perception that the African female is a downtrodden wretch'. But when you look around the African continent today - girls abducted in Nigeria, polygamy reintroduced in Kenya, child marriages and the prevalence of gender based violence, how much is there really to celebrate about being female in Africa?
Tuesday 5 August: Driving out The Devil
Former Dominican friar Mark Dowd joins priests attending an annual course of exorcism to find out why exorcism is a growing part of the Catholic Church’s spiritual concern. More and more priests in the Catholic Church are being trained in the rite of exorcism, and, with the endorsement of the Vatican, the Sacerdos Institute of Rome runs an annual course on the practice.
Wednesday 6 August: Yemen’s Swap Marriages
In Yemen, the heart of Arabia, ancient traditions and values have kept the fabric of society unchanged. They have helped preserve Yemen’s unique charm and character, but have also imprisoned Yemen’s people in the past. Shegar marriage is one such tradition - forcing people to love, only to be forced apart again. It helps poorer families to marry, but at what price? BBC Arabic’s Mai Noman returns to her native Yemen to hear the stories of two women who have loved and lost because of Shegar.
Thursday 7 August: Fearless Women in Turkish Kurdistan
For decades, Turkey’s Kurds have been struggling against a state that used to deny their very existence as a separate people. More than 40,000 people have died – and hundreds of villages have been destroyed – in the war between the Turkish army and the militant Kurdish group, the PKK. But now, just when Kurds in neighbouring Iraq are considering establishing an independent state, and many believe the chaos in Syria will change borders across the region, Kurds in Turkey are increasingly reconciled to remaining within existing frontiers. Tim Whewell travels to the region to meet Kurdish women young and old are increasingly dominating politics as well as public life in towns across Turkey's Kurdish region.