Written by husband-wife team Nicholas D. Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, Half the Sky (published in September 2009) is a non-fiction book about advocacy and education. In it, Kristof and WuDunn aim to enlighten readers about the serious problems women face, including: Sex trafficking, maternal morality, genital mutilation, sexual violence, microfinance loans for businesses run by women, and education. Ultimately, the duo argue that the biggest challenge women all across the world face is "oppression," which they argue is akin to fight against slavery hundreds of years ago.
When it was released, Half the Sky received widespread critical acclaim - and tremendous support from activist groups. Bill Gates called the book "interesting" and said that the book "is [a] stunning, compelling, must-read." Half the Sky was not simply a critical success; it was a massive financial success as well. It spent a fair amount of time on the New York Times bestseller list and sold several hundred thousand copies within months of its publication.