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Watch Interview with the Author of
The Underground Girls of Kabul

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“Afghanistan is considered to be the worst place on earth to be a woman, according to the U.N.” says Jenny Nordberg in the interview below with C-SPAN BookTV. “It’s also the most dangerous place to be a woman. Why is that?”

In Afghanistan, a culture ruled almost entirely by men, the birth of a son is cause for celebration and the arrival of a daughter is often mourned as misfortune.

A bacha posh (literally translated from Dari as “dressed up like a boy”) is a third kind of child – a girl temporarily raised as a boy and presented as such to the outside world.

Jenny Nordberg, the reporter who broke the story of this phenomenon for the New York Times, constructs a powerful and moving account of those secretly living on the other side of a deeply segregated society where women have almost no rights and little freedom.


Congrats to Carrie M., Ellen S., Michelle S., Elizabeth L., Marci H., and 95 other members of the Read It Forward community! Their entries were selected at random to win an Advance Reader’s Copy of The Underground Girls of Kabul by Jenny Nordberg.

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About the Author

JENNY NORDBERG is an award-winning journalist based in New York. A correspondent and columnist for Swedish national newspaper Svenska Dagbladet, she has a long record of investigative reports for, among others, The New York Times, where she also contributed to a series that won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for National Reporting. In 2010, she was awarded the Robert F. Kennedy Award for Excellence in Journalism for a television documentary on Afghan women. She is a member of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ).
  • debby

    The Pearl That Broke It’s Shell is an interesting book about a bacha posh. It wa written by Nadia Hashimi, a pediatrician/writer, whose parents are Afghani.

  • MaryEveLS

    Thanks so very much for selecting me as a winner. I received my book today and I look forward to reading it. Best wishes!!

  • dgkirkwood

    I read the Kabul Beauty School. Interesting the lives of women in Kabul.