Girl Rising is a documentary from the director Richard Robbins and was released in 2013. The film follows the life stories of nine girls from different parts of the world who struggle every day for freedom, education and a chance to be heard. They face arranged marriages, child slavery and among other things. By getting an education, they are able to create change.
All nine stories made a great impact on me. However, the stories of Yasmin and Amina made the greatest. Yasmin is a young Egyptian girl who experience a violent attack, but she will not allow herself to become a victim and let it happen. In contrast, she looks at herself as a superhero. Amina is from Afghanistan and is confined by her gender and expected to only serve men. She is a child bride hunched underneath a blue burqa. Instead of allowing her reputation as a girl who is weak and under control, she is determined to not accept the expectations in the society and lead others to do the same.
The stories about Yasmin and Amina made the greatest impact on me because they both went against what is expected of them. Young Yasmin who faced a much older man did not see herself as a young, weak girl. She choseto believe in herself. Amina accepted herself as a child bride, a young mother, but wanted to change those traditions and rules. She choseto throw her burqa and was determined to go to school no matter what happened. Accordingly, many women followed her as she threw away her burqa, and together they went the opposite way of the society’s expectations of them.
“One girl with courage is a revolution.”
While watching “Girl rising” I noticed that all the nine girls had a lot of courage and was part of a change. I think the phrase above implies that one girl who has the courage to stand up to herself and not accepting the society’s expectations to them, can make a change and inspire others. These girls’ lives are not determined by the women who came before them and they choose how they want to live. They have the power to write their own destinies and speak out about their rights. Amina told herself that “I am change,” and made change. Hence, this is how one girl with courage is a revolution.
The girls in the documentary live in difficult circumstances but do not consider themselves as victims. They go through terrible things that I could never imagine happening to me, and this is why I am only able to sympathize to the girls. It is hard to relate to their lives because I have never experienced something like they have. This proves how much the circumstances and where we live has to say for our lives. There are so many stories out there, and so many different lives.
I think people who are not already familiar with this issue will resonate the most to how things that we take for granted every day can mean a lot to them. For instance, education. The message behind “Girl rising” is: Educate girls and you will change the word. While watching, we see how much education means to them, and to the world in general. The family of Ruksana from India have to choose between education or safety for the children. Seeing how some lives are affected by certain factors, can make a huge impression on people who are not familiar with the issue. The terrible things the girls in the film go through, and how they keep living their lives like it is normal to them, can have great impact on people.
“Girl rising” is briefly about her story to write. As the narrator said: “Girls are not the problem, they’re the problem solvers.”