In celebration of International Women's Day, the Library presented a symposium titled "Life Lines: The Literature of Women's Human Rights" on Wednesday, March 7, 2001. The event, presented by the Library's African and Middle Eastern Division and the Women's Learning Partnership, was free and open to the public.

Participants in the program read from their works, which reflect the discrimination women have faced in various parts of the world. They also described women of courage and vision who have made a difference, and who have challenged traditional stereotypes.

Mahnaz Afkhami acted as the event moderator.

Leila AhmedSpeakers included Leila Ahmed, professor of Women's Studies at Harvard Divinity School, the author of a recently published autobiographical book, A Border Passage from Cairo to America: A Woman's Journey. Before joining Harvard, she was the director of both the Women's Studies Program and the Near Eastern Studies Program at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, and wrote critical studies on Muslim women including, Women and Gender in Islam.

Dr. Alee Azav NefissehGoli Taraghi, could not attend. Ms. Taraghi is a short story writer and novelist and is the author of The Great Lady of My Soul and has written the scripts for two major Iranian films, Pear Tree and Bita. Her presentation was read by Dr Alee Azav Nefisseh of the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies.Abena Busia


Abena Busia, a Ghanian poet and writer, received her doctorate from Oxford University and is currently an English professor at Rutgers University. She is the author of Theorizing Black Feminism and Testimonies in Exile.

Marjorie Agosin teaches in the Spanish Department at Wellesley College. She was recently honored with the United Nations Leadership Award for Human Rights. Her many works include An Absence of Shadow, Always from Somewhere Else, My Jewish Fathers, and an anthropology of women's writings on human rights, A Map of Hope.

Emma SepulvedaEmma Sepulveda is a professor in the foreign Language and Literature Department at the University of Nevada and a columnist for the Reno Gazette Journal. She is the author of Testimonio Ferenio como Escritura Contestataria.

The Women's Leaning Partnership is a private organization that supports women around the world.


Question and answer session.

Photos by Megan Brown

Read more on the event :"Life Lines: The Literature of Women's Human Rights"



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