Aman: The Story of a Somali Girl

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Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, Mar 24, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 368 pages
This is the extraordinary first-person account of a young woman's coming of age in Somalia and her struggles against the obligations and strictures of family and society.  By the time she is nine, Aman has undergone a ritual circumcision ceremony; at eleven, her innocent romance with a white boy leads to a murder; at thirteen she is given away in an arranged marriage to a stranger.  Aman eventually runs away to Mogadishu, where her beauty and rebellious spirit leads her to the decadent demimonde of white colonialists.  Hers is a world in which women are both chattel and freewheeling entrepreneurs, subject to the caprices of male relatives, yet keenly aware of the loopholes that lead to freedom.  Aman is an astonishing history, opening a window onto traditional Somali life and the universal quest for female self-awareness.  

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AMAN: The Story of a Somali Girl

User Review  - Kirkus

A lyrical first-hand account of a complex and charismatic modern-day African heroine. ``Aman'' (a pseudonym meaning ``trustworthy'' in Arabic) is a gifted narrator who recounted her tumultuous life ... Read full review

Aman: the story of a Somali girl

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Though it could have been sensationalized, this is in fact an intimate look at the girlhood of a 20th-century Somali. At eight, Aman was circumcised; at 13, she was married to an older man who ... Read full review


Cover Title Page Copyright Dedication Foreword
Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22

Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 26

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About the author (2010)

Aman’s story was originally compiled by Virginia Lee Barnes, an anthropologist (Ph.D., University of Hawaii), and upon her death in 1989, the manuscript was completed by Janice Boddy, distinguished professor of anthropology at the University of Toronto, who added an introduction placing Aman’s story in its proper historical and social context.

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