Sunday, September 8, 2013
An American Bride in Kabul: A Memoir by Phyllis Chesler
Starting out things definitely read comfortably memoirish. Phyllis contains the rebellious spirit; breaking away from her parents like many young girls have done, and may continue to do, to fall in love with, and marry a young man who models a Prince. The thing is, this isn't any Prince, but a man of means not only native of a country the new bride knows little about, but a man with a social agenda that is as far removed from the brides' knowing and understanding, as the foreign country she's about to loaf off to.
Off she goes, euphorically arm in arm with her Prince to this far off country where her dreaming is awaken by the reality of her situation. The recall of this memory reads incredibly sincere, despite parts of her recall I found challenging to read. Technically, even by U.S. law (as Phyllis learns), and certainly by international law, she was not held captive; a looming misjudgment on both hers and her Prince's part. Arguably however, and largely due to the honesty in retelling this story, it is questionable about whether or not she was mistreated as well... thus here is where the reading challenge mounts; becoming more of a consortium of selective research built into the story to support the memoirist's views.
What I really respected was Phyllis coming to terms with what her Prince was trying to achieve, and in coming to those terms understanding how she could better align her support of women. Overall I highly recommend reading An American Bride in Kabul. Quite an illuminating read into one perspective.