sister-hood is an award-winning digital magazine spotlighting the diverse voices of women of Muslim heritage.

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Pakistan

Opinions

The nature of dissent

The extremist’s beard is like kindling — it takes very little to burn a nation. In Pakistan, there are thousands of extremists — enough kindling to store for winter. In such times, there is a refrain, sung in the echo chambers of rhetorical questions — what…

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Opinions

No country for dissenters

On April 13th, Mashal Khan, a journalism student at Abdul Wali Khan University in Mardan, in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan was publicly lynched for blasphemy allegations. Mashal and his friend Abdullah were accused of promoting blasphemy online. Both…

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Experiences

What abuse feels like

I grew up in a loving home in Karachi at a time when Pakistan was a very different place: a colourful, tolerant and safe society. My parents were a wonderful combination. My father was open-minded and did not differentiate between…

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Opinions

Deluded defenders of God

‘Either grant me the bliss of the ignorant or give me the strength to bear the knowledge.’ Elif Shafak, quoted by Mashal Khan Seventy years ago, Pakistan was born from a vision of hope. It was born with egalitarian ideals,…

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Opinions

Vani: A custom

Sometimes with my evening tea and biscuits I get the rare opportunity to flick through TV channels. Rare, because our TV is almost always occupied by my little sister who wants to watch KPop, or my father who wants to…

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Opinions

Home-made Islam

I never knew any women who had been abused by their husbands, except for two. Once I heard my mother talk about them with her friends, but when she saw me, the ladies shooed me away. ‘This is not that kind of beating, children…

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Experiences

Miserably ever after

‘I stared at the divorce papers. This can’t be happening to me, I said to myself. I never believed I would live to see this day. It was so unbelievable I wanted to scream – with joy!’ remembers Saba,* with…

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Interviews and Reviews

Film, feminism, sexuality and Pakistan

Filmmaker Anam Abbas doesn’t subscribe to self-victimisation. It’s a topic that springs up regularly in her work though. In fact, whether it’s her feature documentary, Zunn: Showgirls of Pakistan, or the popular web series, Ladies Only, Abbas positions her protagonists…

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Opinions

The return of Afghan refugees

For the past thirty-five years, Afghan refugees have migrated to Pakistan, escaping the fire of war, instability and terrorism, which has erupted in their own country. Living as refugees for decades, Afghans have developed strong bonds with their Pakistani neighbours….

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Experiences

No, it’s not safe

‘No, it’s not safe,’ my mother used to tell me when I asked to join her as she taught the Holy Qur’an to small children in remote areas of Rabwah, Pakistan. I wondered what exactly was not safe. Innocently, I…

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Opinions

The courageous resistance of Okara’s women

The landless farmers of Okara’s military-owned farms have a long history of resistance against the military and land owning classes. The tenants (mazareen) have been tilling the land for over a hundred years. Agricultural and non-agricultural workers from East Punjab…

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Experiences

Women carry a heavier coffin

‘So beta, this is the church where there is also a graveyard for Muslims. I feel I belong here. This is one of my favorite spots. I liked being here when I was younger. When I will die, I want…

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