Iqbal Masih and the Crusaders Against Child Slavery

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Macmillan, Oct 15, 1998 - Juvenile Nonfiction - 133 pages
It is a rare thing for a child to become an effective social/political activist and even more unusual to have that activism reverberate around the world. Iqbal Masih's dramatic life story was widely told in the American media after his 1994 visit to the United States to receive the Reebok Human Rights Foundation "Youth in Action" Award and his murder a few months later. Susan Kuklin builds on those accounts and many more to explain the tragic yet fruitful life of the young Pakistani rug weaver who broke out of bondage to become a leader against child slavery in his own country and abroad. Kuklin draws on first-hand accounts of child laborers from several countries as she weaves the story of Iqbal's experiences into a larger picture of child labor engendered by the global economy. The grim lives of the "debt-bonded" children are shocking; the uneven political gains against child slavery, rather discouraging. Yet the courage, achievements, and legacy of these child advocates are the inspiring elements of the story. Many American children who met Iqbal joined the cause after his death. Using modern technology to recruit forces against the punitive labor system, children from several countries used the Internet to tell Iqbal's story and raise memorial money to construct a school for bonded children. The honesty, documentation, and timeliness of the unfinished story of both child slavery and the killing of Iqbal Masih are riveting. A stunning opening photograph of Iqbal commands the reader's attention, and many other wrenching pictures tell the plight of the children. The book-ultimately a call to action-concludes with a rich store of appended material, including a substantial list of Websites and organizations, short accounts of children's political action efforts, extensive chapter notes, glossary, bibliography, and index.

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User Review  - Kathdavis54 - LibraryThing

Iqbal Masih lived a short life, but accomplished more than most people. He started off as a child slave in Pakistan and journey across the world to tell his story. His life has an abrupt ending, but ... Read full review

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This story is an account of a former Pakistani child labor activist's life and unexplained murder. This is a revealing story of child bondage and cruel child labor.

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About the author (1998)

Susan Kuklin was asked to write this book by two of the human rights activists she profiled in her award-winning book Irrepressible Spirit: Conversations with Human Rights Activists. The author of many highly praised books for young readers, she lives with her husband in New York City.

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