Kristof On Prioritizing Women’s Rights

At last night’s party for the bestselling book Half The Sky, co-author Nicholas Kristof called the fight for women’s equality “the cause of our time.” We found ourselves thinking such a sentiment that would surely rile any number of activists that hold other issues – poverty, the degradation of the environment, the scourge of war – closer to their hearts.

With this in mind, we re-read an article Kristof wrote for the New York Times back in August, where he made a strong argument for prioritizing the fight for woman’s equality:

Yet if the injustices that women in poor countries suffer are of paramount importance, in an economic and geopolitical sense the opportunity they represent is even greater. “Women hold up half the sky,” in the words of a Chinese saying, yet that’s mostly an aspiration: in a large slice of the world, girls are uneducated and women marginalized, and it’s not an accident that those same countries are disproportionately mired in poverty and riven by fundamentalism and chaos. There’s a growing recognition among everyone from the World Bank to the U.S. military’s Joint Chiefs of Staff to aid organizations like CARE that focusing on women and girls is the most effective way to fight global poverty and extremism. That’s why foreign aid is increasingly directed to women. The world is awakening to a powerful truth: Women and girls aren’t the problem; they’re the solution.

Read the full article at the New york Times website.