Feminists in the United States have been surprisingly MIA when it comes to getting involved in helping women in a part of the world where women really are oppressed.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali may be one of the bravest women in the world-and she’s not hanging out at the Wellesley Women’s Center. The Somali-born former member of the Dutch parliament, critic of the treatment of women in the Muslim world, and associate of slain filmmaker Theo Van Gogh, will soon be working around the corner from the IWF at the American Enterprise Institute.
Christopher Hitchens writes about “Dutch Courage” (she has been kicked out of the Netherlands), and Suzanne Fields writes about the oppression of women that hasn’t aroused much anger from U.S. feminists:
“‘The Caged Virgin,’ Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s passionate plea for the emancipation of Muslim women, has just been published here, an eloquent petition for simple justice for women whose abuse is often concealed, like their bodies draped in the chador. She tells Muslim women to read John Stuart Mill’s 1869 essay ‘The Subjection of Women’ to begin to understand how women in the West were finally recognized as the equal of men. She laments the way Muslim women are socialized to believe that their oppression is right and just, and she shows how ‘multiculturalism’ insulates them in subjugation, preventing them from joining the larger culture.”