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Outlive Your Life: You were made to make a difference by Max Lucado

We are bright, educated, and experienced. We can travel around the world in twenty-four hours or send a message in a millisecond. We have the most sophisticated research and medicines at the tips of our fingers. We have ample resources. A mere 2 percent of the world’s grain harvest would be enough, if shared, to erase the problems of hunger and malnutrition around the world

Women’s Rights

With reference to The War on Women by Sue Lloyd Roberts, a book I can’t recommend highly enough.

The laundries of Ireland have been well documented and should never be forgotten. They operated from 1767 to 1996, during which time tens of thousands of girls were sent to them by priests and embarrassed families. 160 names of former ‘workers’ at High Park Magdelene Laundry and Drumcondra are engraved into a giant headstone. One woman had been kept in the laundry for 56 years. In another case in the 1990s nuns sold off a piece of land in which the remains of 150 bodies were dug up.
Both in England and Ireland ‘fallen women’ (including those made pregnant through incest and rape) were sent to laundries where rich men were made richer through their slave labour. There was never any acknowledgement of the sins of the men.

Women’s Rights

I’ve been reading quotes from successful women:

‘Don’t be afraid to speak up for yourself. Keep fighting for your dreams.’ Gabby Douglas.
‘Power is not given to you. You have to take it.’ Beyonce Knowles.
‘I never dreamed about success. I worked for it.’ Estee Lauder.

These are the cosy thoughts of women raised in a modern western society. None of these women come from a place of subjugation; where misogyny is legitimized. A woman hailing from a society such as that makes no choices – NONE. She has been deprived of the knowledge to make decisions. If she should manage to think independently she’ll be beaten, at the very least, for audacity. For the spoiling of male pride. And if there is any sense of self remaining, she’ll be stoned to death.

This is the reality Abrins Wife comes to realise after being stolen from her home. When she returns to it with that knowledge, she finds herself reaping a very singular form of revenge.

See more about The Smile by clicking on www.vinctalin.org

Ever wondered?

Are you curious about the term ‘pale fire’?

It was first penned by Shakespeare in Timon of Athens: The moon’s an arrant thief, And her pale fire she snatches from the sun.
Wow! Needs no explanation, just appreciation. Who else could have that concept and arrange such words?
Incidentally, Vladimir Nabokov took that term as a title for his 1962 book.

Women’s Rights

Christianity has been, and still is, frequently misused. Take this fourth century quote from St. Jerome, for example: Woman is the root of all evil.
And here also is an example described by Sue Lloyd Roberts in her book The War on Women: in the thirteenth century, Canon law legitimized the idea of incarcerating women who’d ‘abandoned the marriage bed’. Such women, no matter their reason, were regarded as sinful and sentenced (by men) to perform perpetual penance. This law regained popularity in the nineteenth century, as an ideal method of providing slave labour when the majority of the vast laundries were built in Ireland and England. Surely, the corruption of religion by the wealthy, to gain greater wealth, must be one of the worst sins of all.

Ever wondered where this phrase comes from?

Look on my works ye mighty and despair.

If you don’t already know this one you’ve absolutely got to Google the whole poem: Ozymandias by Shelley. Ozymandias was the ancient Greek name for Egyptian pharaoh Ramesses II. The massive statue of Ozymandias had been broken with the title words surviving on a plaque. Musing on the remains, Shelley considered the ravages of time and how all great figures of history, along with their empires, eventually fall into decay and oblivion.

Women’s Rights

In The War on Women, Sue Lloyd Roberts reports 1,000 honour killings per year in Pakistan. Note that figure: one thousand.
Here is one example in brief: a fourteen year-old girl wanted to marry a boy, but her father said she must marry his 45 year-old cousin because there was a handsome dowry to be had and they could keep the money in the family.
Because she refused her father killed her and he committed the murder in public, as a warning to her sisters. Then he cut off her hands.
Tribal law meant he faced no punishment as the right to waive is given to the family. Legitimization in Pakistani society makes this acceptable to most women and the rest is achieved through brutality.
It was knowledge of misogyny, the subjugation of women and the legitimisation process that inspired me to write The Smile. A work I finished, incidentally, some time before I discovered Sue Lloyd Robert’s book.

The Legitimization Process

This describes the social process by which one group within a society holds on to belief systems that are handed down to them as ‘right and proper’ by those with power and influence. It is the process by which the masses can be persuaded to take on a style of life that serves the few at the top. In my book The Smile, women are legitimized into viewing themselves as inferior and thus subservient, to men. And in my book Habitat there is the notion that obedience to ‘the rules’ is necessary for the good of all. Naturally, the hero in it is a rebel.