Thursday, October 22, 2009

Question of the Week (10/23/09)


Looking ahead to our next book, The Kite Runner, what do you know about the culture of Afghanistan?  Post by Sunday, 10/25.

35 comments:

Emily Lohr said...

The culture of Afghanistan is greatly influenced by presence of terrorism. Women can't show skin and have to wear burqas. Many of the markets are called bazaars. The main religion is Islam and the Taliban is basically in charge in the more rural areas and they do very bad things to people, such as kill them by means of torture. A common torture mechanism would be stoning, raping, and battery. Kabul is the capital of Afghanistan

Kelsey said...

I don't really know very much about Afghanistan. As Emily said, I know that the women are not allowed to show their skin, and must wear scarves over their faces. I also know a little about the Taliban, and that they took all power and control of Afghanistan, and were very cruel and violent in the way that they controlled the people. Besides this, I really don't know anything else about Afghanistan!

Kiana said...

I also don't know all that much about Afghanistan. Like Emily and Katie I know that women aren't allowed to show their skin and the Taliban is in charge of parts of Afghanistan, where they use different violent methods to maintain control. Geographically, Afghanistan located in the Middle East, and is bordered by Iran and Pakistan.

Sarah McAndrew said...

I know that the culture of Afghanistan is extremely different than American culture. For one women in Afghanistan are treated like animals and have barely any basic rights if any. They have to keep their bodies concealed at all times, they aren't allowed to look men in the eye, they aren't allowed to vote, they must obey whatever their husbands command, became women cannot go to school, and for awhile (I don't know if this is still true) they weren't allowed to leave the house without a male family member accompanying them. When the Taliban took over the majority of Afghanistan they took away even more rights from women from what minimal rights they had to begin with. Afghanistan has very different methods of punishment from the U.S. They do very violent and unnecessary things to people who commit meager crimes. For instance, if you steal, they cut off your hand. Steal again, and they cut off your foot. They stone women to death for committing adultery, but if a man commits adultery it is expected, and he goes unpunished. On a lighted note, Afghanistan is also known for excellent poetry. Unfortunately when the Taliban came in, they wanted all poetry, movies, music, and any form of art burned.

Jeff said...

All I know is that it is extremely different than most cultures that I have ever been a part of. The government isn't very strong and they have a lot of terrorism. We, the US, has tried to enter and help them. Bin Laden is thought to be there still, and we are trying to find him. Women aren't allowed as much freedom as the women in our culture. They can't show their skin in public, and if they do anything bad they could be punished by death. It's in the middle east which is notorious for their problems.

Katie Callahan said...

I do not know much either, like Kelsely, I know that women and girls are not equal to men. They have to cover all of their face except their eyes. In most cases, women and girls are not educated or educated as much as boys are. It is expected that women raise the children, clean, cook and work a woman's job. Many people live a very hard life some do not have the bear neccessities such as food, running water, or electricity. They live everyday in fear of the Taliban who kill innocent civilians. For such a peaceful people who's are primarily Muslim, violence is an ever present aspect of their lives.

Michaela Helble said...

I also don't know very much about Afhganistan. The main things that I knew were that women weren't treated well, like Sarah said, and I think it's terrible that they barely have any rights. Punishments for small crimes are often huge and often unesecarily violent, which I think a few people have already mentioned.
Also, like Kiana said, I knew that Afghanistan waa located in the Middle East and is bordered by Iraq and Pakistan. I knew that women are forced to cover their bodies and that they are thought as possesions and basically just inferior to men in all ways.
The only other thing that I knew was that Kabul is the capital and largest city in Afghanistan.

Alice.Rottersman said...

I know little about Afghan culture, but I do know its geographical location, which is a good start. I think the main religion is Islam, which is broken up into different sects that don't always get along. Two of them start with the letter "S" ...Sunni? ...Shia? Religion has a big impact on the culture.
As others have said, the society is mesogynistic. I'd assume it's very different from the US (well..duh) and probably a lot tougher to get by.
The main languages are Dari and Pashto, I remember that from 3rd grade. That's about all I know...

Lupi Linehan said...

I don't know very much about afghanistan as most people have said I know that the women are restricted and have to be almost entirely covered at all times, and men and women are not treated equally at all--like Katie and Kelsey said. The taliban control everyone in afghanistan and kill innocent people every day.

Daniel G said...

Basically what I know consists of government and religion. The government is very weak and, like Emily and others said, the taliban rules over many areas that are seperated from any means of help. The taliban kills some people and does unimaginable things to many, and there is never any justification for their actions. People also try to escape the taliban and flee to safety. The main religion, as many others have already mentioned, is Islam. There are different sects of Islam, and these divisions of Muslims have many disputes throughout Afghanistan. All in all, there is next to nothing in the way of order throughout Afghanistan, excluding a few cities that are probably a bit safer.

Daniel Alberta said...

I don't know much but they are definetaly influenced by terrorism. Their Presidant is Karzay. They are located in the Middle East. Men and woman are treated completly different. It is bordered by Pakistan and Iraq. Thats pretty much all I know.

Hayley said...

As I'm sue many have said before me, I know very little. I know the basic things. The women there have less rights than the women in America, and they have to cover their hair and skin a lot more. The government tends towards oppressiveness, and there is a lot of fear, not just of terrorism, but of the war. There is more poverty, and I believe that there are more children who have to fend for themselves. The religion is Islam, and the different sects fight often. Still, i believe that they can't be that different from people everywhere else. They have friends and loved ones, and they play sports, listen to music, and create art. Though their culture is very different from ours, deep down, they can't be that different.

Erin Donohue said...

I'm not very familiar with Afghani culture, but I have learned from health class that there is illegal poppy cultivation and opium trade that occurs here...The capital, Kabul, has over 1 million inhabitants... and as lots of people have mentioned before my post, women are not granted equal rights within society.

I agree with what Hayley said, "Though their culture is very different from ours, deep down, they can't be that different." I think that in the media today, we have been exposed to many negative things about Afghani culture, and have possibly overlooked the things make it unique or beautiful in many ways that are not violent.

Bryce said...

I honestly do not know much about the culture there, but I have a basic idea about what it is like there because of what we see on news channels. Afganistan is full of terriosts, so people there must really fear for their lives. It is also very hot there and I think there is desert around that area. I am also in Health class and agree with what Erin said about how there is a lot of illegal drugs there.


I am pretty sure that women there do not have as many rights as men do. Also they have to wear a lot of clothing to cover their skin (maybe that's another country). It is sort of like how LuLing and Precious Anutie did not have as much power as men did in the Chinese culture.

I'm sure there are some good things about this country, but we never hear about the good things there because our country is fighting theirs. There is a lot of propaganda towards them. Most of the people proabably aren't even involoved in terroism. I feel bad for the civilians that are surrounded by war.

Leah said...

I am also unfamiliar with Afghani culture. I agree with the rest of my classmates that in Afghanistan men are viewed by society as superior to women. Women must wear loose clothing to cover their bodies and faces at all times when in public and in front of men who are not family members. I also faintly recall something about discrimination in other ways (though I'm not sure about this). From what I remember, women are not the only group discriminated against. In Afghanistan, there are different classes, classes that determined by birth and cannot be changed. People who are born lower class are seen as almost sub-human, servants to the upper class. People of different classes do not mix. However, I'm not positive about any of this...

Reading posts from classmates, there's a lot about the Taliban. I don't know the truth, but I think a lot of us only know stereotypes, and we need to be careful about that.

lynda said...

All I really know is that the Afgani culture is totally different from our culture that we know and love.. the Islam religion dominates many people's lives and actions. Many people there do not drink, nor do they eat pork. Women are also seen as inferior to men, and are not allowed to bare skin. They are also not allowed to marry western men, while Afgani men can marry whom they want to.

As a response to Leah, I think you mean India, with the caste system. But maybe Afganistan has one too?

Ella Kaplan said...

Like many people have mentioned, I am not really that familiar with afghanistan as a country and its culture. I do know that it is located in the middle east and that there is a lot of violence, terrorism and war going on in the country. There is a lot of segregation between men and women, natives and none. The Taliban is a terrorist group in afghanistan that tortures people everyday. There is also a lot of poverty there and I believe that there are American troops over in afghanistan helping to moderate the government and the country.

Megan Pattison said...

I don't know too much about the culture of Afghanistan, but having read The Kite Runner, i know rules are respected and punishments are severe. As people above have mentioned, the Taliban are a significant factor in the way people are treated. Women face huge risks if they do not behave just so. The Taliban are harsh and relentless when it comes to punishing those who do not cooperate exactly. Justice is not a word in their vocabulary and things are never fair.

Jennie said...

I know hardly anything about the culture of Afghanistan. A few years ago, it was common to hear news on television or the radio concerning foreign affairs with Afghanistan. Despite having heard all of this, I really don't know what Afghanistan culture is like. I do know, however, that it is very different from American culture. It is more strict. Thinking about this other culture, it reminds me of the culture differences between China and America seen in The Bonesetter's Daughter. I think it will be interesting reading another book with such a huge cultural difference from our own.

Sonya said...

I don't know very much about the culture of Afghanistan even though as Jennie said it was mentioned on the news all the time a few years ago. I know that it is a very different from here. As a few people have mentioned, there is segregation between men and women, and women must stay completely covered in public and in front of men who are not family members. The main religion in Afghanistan is Islam.
Other than that, I don't know very much, so I'm excited to read The Kite Runner and learn about a different culture.

Meghan Licciardi said...

I know very little about the culture in Afghanistan. Like so many people have mantioned, i think that i know that woman are seen as inferior, and treated poorly, can not show skin, and have very little rights, but this could just be certain areas of Afghanistan. I know that the primary religion is Islam, and that the Taliban, an extremest religious group has quite a bit of control.

Mallory said...

The women in Afghanistan are treated very poorly, they're not allowed to congregate without a male present or to show their face to anyone but their husband or family. The Taliban has control over huge portions of the country, and therefore fear is not uncommon for families that do not follow the main religion of Islam. There are many different methods the Taliban use to maintain control over Afghani civilians.

Brendon said...

The culture of afghanistan is greatly influenced by its history. Over time, many ethnic groups have invaded and altered the culture.
I am not knowledged in the culture of afghanistan tohugh. So I can not speculate anymore. From the previous posts, I can assume that women are seen as inferior to men. Their lifestyles are restricted to activities with men only.

Burton said...

Like most people have said above i know very little about the culture of Afghanistan. But from what i do know it is easy to see that there are rules, and these rules are to be followed by all. You don't see one or two doing things like covering their skin you see them all. Also i notice that a lot of these rules are about women, and what they can and can't do.

tylertorh said...

I KNOW ALL ABOUT DAT
well not really : (
These are the things i know
women have very close to no rights in this country
I dont believe that they can drive
from this I draw the conclusion that the culture of afghanistan is behind on the times.
I agree with Burton in the fact that unlike our society that is a great big melting pot for all races customs and beliefs,
Afghanistan has guidelines for everyone to follow.

Sam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sam said...

The culture of Afghanistan is deadly and unpredictable. Many conflicting groups reside in the same areas. The countries government is practically corrupt, if not puppeted by another group. Women and minority groups are oppressed and treated like slaves. Taxes, government protection, and education systems are all screwed up because no one is able to organize anything with all the fighting going on. Compared to (other?) first world countries Afghanistan is in corrupted turmoil and not getting out anytime soon. Even after other countries stepped in following 9/11, no progress was made. Don't expect this book to be a happy one.

Michael said...

Afghanistan has seen off empire after empire. The people survived Alexander the Great, The Celucids, the northern Indians who defeated the, Celucids, the Mughals who brought Islam to the region, the British who displaced the Mughals, the Russians in the 1980's and now they are trying to get rid of the US.
Ethnically the country is divided along the lines of the Paschtoons(Not sure if that is the correct spelling) and the northern tribes. The Paschtoons are generally regarded as being very Persian, and the northern tribes are seen as less civilized. Parallels have been drawn between the Tribes of Afghanistan and the clans of Scotland, both being inclined to internecine warfare and bloody feuds.
The main religion is Islam, brought into the region by the Persian base Mughals in the late 15th century. The people of Afghanistan took to Islam in their own fervent and extreme way. They have taken Islamic laws designed to protect the dignity of women to an extreme and used them to limit their rights. Currently, girls being educated is frowned upon by many, and women are not allowed to show their skin to any man who is not a blood or marriage relative.
The Current "democratically elected" Government is quite weak, and only kept in power by US backing. The Taliban, the remnants of the freedom fighting group supplied by the US to fight the Russians, control most of the rural territory. There is significant bad feeling on the part of the Taliban towards the US, not only because we invaded in 2001, but because we forsook them as soon as we had used them against the Russians. The Taliban came to power as a political group thanks to the efforts of a Pakistani government agency which sought to put a puppet, pro-Pakistan government in place in Kabul. This backfired when the people put in place turned out to have serious ideas about self government, and showed themselves to be extremists with no interest in imperialistic meddling.
Currently the country is in turmoil. US troop strength is somewhere in the realm of 27,000 and NATO has another 27. The drug trade, suppressed under the Taliban regime has seen a massive resurgence, and the country is still the sight of medium-scale fighting.

Nicolas said...

Afghanistan is a world apart from ours, geographically as well as culturally. Their approach to society is very different from ours, and it is because of this division and unfamiliarity that hatred grows. It is a question of what ideals a society chooses to uphold. As Americans, we value equality and freedom above all else; this is what our society is based off of.
The Afghan society is based off of an entirely different set of ideals. These differences result in what we see as 'injustice', such as restrictions on womens rights. People that we call 'terrorists' hate us because of their beliefs, of what they consider to be 'just'. It is important to remember this before we categorize anyone as evil. I'm not saying that terrorists aren't evil, but its important to know that there is a flip side to every coin. I'm not yet confident enough to write about Afghani values, but I hope to learn more about this subject by reading Kite Runner.

George Papa said...

What i know about Afghanistan is that its bordered by both Iran and Pakistan, as most others have said Afg. has been greatly influenced by terroism going on in the area. I know that the appearence of men and women are different then most other areas of the world. Men in Afg. are usually seen wearing Lungee (Turbans) and women are usually kept without exposing much skin do to religous factors but what they do wear reflects upon the religion they follow.

Chris W said...

I have no idea...other than the fact that they're a very religious and family oriented people. The way it's shaped is very likely different because of the location geographically which probably affected it's development...I dunno, but I don't think women have rights. As far as I know, they can't be taken over though, everyone has failed to forcefully change the country...basically, I guess, I know that they're "run by religion" and that helps the country, but also hurts them in a lot of ways...meh, that's all I've got...

Nathaniel brown said...

I think that Afghanistan is a very fragmented state. Its history of war and turmoil has left it with a very diverse population, who don't always get along. I know that the Taliban have been in control in the past, and still have substantial power. I do not know if the Taliban has actaul support among the general population. I do know that Afghanistan is heavily embroiled in the production of Opium and related drugs. The money from this probably supports the Taliban. I know that women enjoy very little personal freedom, and need to keep their faces covered.

christopher.harwick said...

Like most people I do not have a vast knowledge of the afghan society. Again I also know that that women are not treated as equals to men, because of this they have to cover most of their bodies with a piece of clothing called a burka. While wearing a burka only their eyes are visable. Furthermore there is a prescence of terrorism in the country. The taliban and al quida are in Afganistan and in surrounding countries.

Robin Smith said...

I do not know very much about Afgahnanstan, except that we are currently fighting a war against terrorism in Afgahnastan. I know that often women are suppressed in the culture and that they have to cover themselves in a Burka. I know that the Afghan people are made up of a wide variety of ethnicities and that there are many religions practiced in Afganastan. I think that religion plays a big role in the everyday life of Afgahn people. I agree that family also plays a bigrole in Afgahn life, probably larger than the role it plays in the United States

Alex Krass said...

I have heard a lot about afgahnistan. But teh big things that i know is taht they have been messed up fo a long time. They have been havign fights with terrorists within in their coountry and fights with other countries. I know that the US has soldiers within their borders right now but i am not sure waht they plan to do that. I also know that women are very disrespected in the country and teh have intresting religions compared to the ones we are used to. I am excited to read a book that will give me more information about waht is going on there