Violence Against Women

Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.

“At 6.00 in the morning she begins her morning cleaning. After preparing breakfast and clearing the table, she cleans up all the rooms.” This is a brief translation of a short passage secondary school students are given in Turkey. The passage supposedly depicts the role of a married Turkish woman in a household. Nowhere in the passage is a man mentioned doing any housework. The passage is completely based on the fact that women are the one’s who should clean, cook and nurture the children.

I remember the first time I read it. I didn’t even question what I had learned that day in school. It was just another mundane school day. Little did I know by not speaking up that day in class, by not questioning the passage and by not asking whether being a woman was more than just cooking and cleaning, I was contributing to a problem that was much bigger than I ever realized.

I was brought up in a culture where once a girl gets married the family “gives” her away, as if girls are a prized possession, where it is completely normal to see more than 5 reports a day in the newspapers about girls who were raped, murdered or beaten, and where in some places it is completely normal to get married at ages as young as 13. How can one accept us to...

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