Letter from the Editor XVIII

Dear Reader, There are many things that exist that we should not need. Say, a maternity collection for twelve-year-olds. And we are clearly in need of basic things that many cannot afford – for example sanitary pads and tampons, and not only in developing countries. Even in Europe, female hygiene articles are taxed as ‘luxury goods’. And then there are things we do need, but may not know it. Things that are brought into this world by fearless girls and their supporters. Boxing Pakistani girls, skater girls from Afghanistan, health educators from Uganda. Slowly, the scales are moving in the...

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30 August 2017: Cowards All

“If you see something, say something.” This phrase has been plastered all over subways, busses, airports, and other public places around the world since September 11, 2001. We see it so often, we have become numb to it. Because we see things everyday that are outrageous, intolerable, and demanding action, it has become the norm, and most people do nothing. Oh, yeah, we do something—we get out our phones. Not to make a phone call to the police or security or emergency services, but to record. We have become a society of documentarians rather than humanitarians. It fulfills the social...

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Letter from the Editor XVII

Dear Reader, We live in a world of extremes. On one side, a young girl bows to thank a stranger for a kindness, and on the other she is raped, refused an abortion, and gives birth at the age of 10. The depravity and degradation of the negative acts seem to grow each day, as do the generosity and compassion of the positive ones. This issue will find you wondering why girls continue to be the targets of such extremes of human behavior. Let us hope there is a middle path. With Strength and Hope, -Ashley E Remer Editor Girl News International To view the latest issue of Girl News International,...

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A Postcard from Tubo’u

  Postcards were popular ways for photographers to share images of Empire back to the home country. The cabinet card style of portraiture became fashionable from about 1870. Images of colonized landscapes and people helped those back home to take ownership and believe they had a bit of understanding of faraway places and cultures. Very often, it was young women or girls who were photographed to demonstrate the perceived vulnerability and exotic, coquettish ways of the colonies. These females become unknown symbols of submission. But least we know her name—Tubo’u. Here, she is...

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Letter from the Editor XVI

Dear Reader, The easiest way to kill an idea is to not say it out loud. The easiest way to make women disappear is to not say their names, or even acknowledge the fact they have one. And there are so many more ways of hushing female lives: not letting their dance be seen, their song be heard, their knowledge be passed on. But women are speaking up and acting up. In Afghanistan, women are campaigning for their right of name. A hijab-wearing heavy metal girl group from Indonesia continue to do what they love. A young Indian girl will not be silenced in her fight against child marriage. And in...

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30 July 2017: Climb Every Mountain

Girls carry water for miles. They do complex maths. They play golf and polo. They read and write books. They raise money for good causes. They build robots and design apps to help people. They climb mountains – like Khansa, who climbed all seven summits in Indonesia, an enormous challenge. That they do all of this is demonstrated this month. Yet they are also married off before they are teens, sold into the sex trade by their own mothers, and raped and murdered for not having the right boyfriend. This also happened over the past few weeks. We cannot underestimate that girls will walk for...

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Letter from the Editor XV

Dear Reader, As always, this has been quite a month for the girls in the world. There have been tremendous highs and dreadful lows. Achievements have been largely in the realms of STEM and sports, while setbacks continue in basic human rights, harassment, and freedom from sexual assault. Despite all of the obstacles and ground lost, we can take heart that girls are continuing to be brave, strong, and fighting to keep the planet from being destroyed. With strength and hope, Ashley E. Remer Editor Girl News...

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Letter from the Editor XII

Dear Reader, Change can only last if it comes from inside. Whether it’s from inside a country like Afghanistan, where young women lead a TV station, or a inside a society accepting and celebrating a lesbian prom king and queen. Change must address a need, such as a mother developing new girl’s clothing because nothing on the market suits her girls. And change needs support – especially our support— if it helps girls. Please share the stories from this issue, and pass on the message of how change can happen. Because if we work together, nothing must stay unchanged. With strength and hope,...

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30 April 2017: Everything Counts

I ate a chocolate bar today, but it was a mini so it didn’t count. We would like to think lots of little things we do don’t matter. And this can often spill over into bigger, more important things. Especially if these are things done to us. He hit me, but it didn’t count, because I deserved it. From the time we are born and before, everything that happens to us shapes who we will become and how we will function in the world. Subtle and overt violence is so common, we become numb. If we are not taught to value our whole selves—our bodies and our minds—we will not know what...

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Receipt for Slave Girl, Cuneiform tablet

  This small clay tablet is a receipt written in an ancient text called cuneiform. These wedge-shaped characters were used in the first writing systems in the world. In particular, this one is from the time of Cambyses II, ruler of Babylon. It is a receipt for the sale of a slave girl. Slavery was normal in the Ancient world. While it may have been an accepted system then, this does not make it any more right than it would be today. Girls were bought and sold as slaves by the thousands for several purposes, like domestic workers and concubines. They were also acquired to become the...

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