Book Review: ‘I Should Have Honor’ is a Powerful Memoir by Khalida Brohi

Tilyan Aslam 
The book – I should have honor is a very bold and eye-opening memoir by the award-winning activist and social entrepreneur Khalida Brohi. She is one of the leading voices against honor killings and violence against women in Pakistan. As a young woman from the same country, I find Khalida a very fearless and inspirational woman. The book and her story are incredibly empowering to me as a woman.
In the book, Khalida shares how she takes on tribal honor killings in Pakistan after her beloved cousin – a young and confident girl is brutally murdered by her close relatives and uncles.
She shares the stories of different women in the book starting from her mother who was a victim of child marriage and was married at the age of nine to other women in her family and community who experience various injustices and inequalities.
Her book explains her early life, how she started her social activism against honor killings in her region, and the way she fought back courageously with all the odds she had encountered at the age of 16.
Khalida’s memoir was heartfelt and touching to me in ways that I connected to every bit of it while reading it. The support of her father and the way he prioritized Khalida’s and her siblings’ education over everything despite the financial crisis they had is something I really connected to.
She also added a touch of her emotions and expressed her immense love for the simplicity of her culture and the beauty of Balochistan – her homeland.
This book stood to me really well and inspired me to see what a powerful change a young woman can bring even with the odds heavily stacked against her.
‘I should have honor’ beautifully redefines honor and gives the readers a new meaning of what honor is, “ Honor is not murder. And dishonor is not a girl who goes to school. It is not a girl who plays outside. It is not a girl who refuses to marry at a young age. It is not a girl who speaks, laughs, and takes the opportunities that come in front of her. Instead, honor is identity. Honor is dignity. Honor is serving those we love with integrity and hard work; it is respecting one another, welcoming the stranger, and speaking and being proud of your own language. It is providing for your family, striving for the best in life.”
This is definitely a must-read book to know the moving story of the very inspiring Khalida Brohi and the great impact she’s been making since her teen years with understanding the beautiful aspects of her culture and reconceiving the norms and traditions related to it to bring peace, equality, and harmony in the world.
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