Burned Alive
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Qamar Jan

Qamar Jan | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

This picture is a women named Qamar Jan.  She was 18 years old when she was attacked in 2007 in Kabul by her angry fiance after a marriage refusal in Afghanistan.  It makes me sick how women are being treated around the world.  

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Jacqueline Thibault

Jacqueline Thibault | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

This woman is Jacqueline Thibault.  She is the woman who saved Souad from the West Bank after getting burned by her brother-in-law. She saved her by convincing her family that she was going to take her somewhere else to die.  She really took her to Europe so that she could live a better life.  Jacqueline also works with a foundation called SURGIR.  They help women that are being abused all over the world find a better life.

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Honor Killing

Honor Killing | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

This picture is a woman who got severely burned from an honor killing.  It is very common for a woman to get burned in the Middle East and they do not think of it as a crime.  It makes me very sad to think that honor killings still happen today.

 

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Visions of Israel - Religion

WLIW21 New York Public Television provides quality programming for PBS as an innovator in broadcasting, production and distribution. Filmed with the latest high definition (HD) technology, WLIW's VISIONS aerial series is a visual itinerary, visit to your family’s homeland, souvenir, trip of a lifetime or the virtual realization of your fantasy vacation.
Loreen Labana's insight:

"Israel is a Jewish state, was reestablished in 1948 as the historic and modern home of the Jewish people, and is the world's only Jewish state" (Visions of Israel).  Israel is also the only state in the Middle East that has full freedom of religion for all.  Each community has its own religious council and courts, recognized by law and with jurisdiction over all religious affairs and matters or personal status such as marriage and divorce. The majority of the citizens practice Judaism according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.  "Today, Jewish society in Israel is made up of observant and non-observant Jews, ranging from the ultra-Orthodox to those who regard themselves s secular" (Visions of Israel).  Today, most Muslims in Israel are Sunni Arabs.  In Israel, there are many people who also follow Christianity.  "The Christian communities in Israel are comprised of four basic groups: Chalcedonian-Orthodox, Non-Chalcedonian Orthodox (Monophysite), Roman Catholic (Latin and Uniate) and Protestant" (Visions of Israel).  In the Middle East, Israel is a democracy that welcomes people of all faiths to be citizens and to participate in Israeli life.


Israel relates to America in many ways.  They both welcome people of all faith to be citizens and to participate in their Culture.  They both allow everyone to choose which religion they would like to follow.  The Bill of Rights states that, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition Government for a redress of grievances."  This is showing that in America, there is freedom of religion.  In Israel, the majority of people practice Judaism.  In America, the majority of people practice Christianity.

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Worldwide Trends in Honor Killings :: Middle East Quarterly

Worldwide Trends in Honor Killings :: Middle East Quarterly | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
To combat the epidemic of honor killings requires understanding what makes these murders unique. They differ from plain and psychopathic homicides, serial killings, crimes of passion, revenge killings, and domestic violence. Their motivation is different
Loreen Labana's insight:

This article talks about honor killings in the Middle East. It states that in 2000, the United Nations estimated that there are 5,000 honor killings every year. In the West, both Islamist and feminist groups insist that honor killings are a form of Western-style domestic violence or femicide. Studies find that honor killings accelerated significantly in a 20-year period between 1989 and 2009. This may mean that honor killings are escalating. The article states that the worldwide average age of victims for the entire population is twenty-three. This is true for all geographical regions. Honor killings are primarily against young women. Over half of the victims are daughters and sisters; about a quarter were wives and girlfriends. "Honor killings are a family collaboration. Worldwide, two-thirds of the victims were killed by their families of origin" (Worldwide Trends in Honor Killings). This article also talks about a Morsal, a 16 year old German-Afghan girl that was killed in May 2008 by her 24 year old brother. He stabbed her twenty-three times because of her "impure moral conduct"


Honor killings also took place in the West Bank, where Souad grew up.  Families often killed their daughters for acting with "impure moral conduct" such as having sex before marriage.   "I smell the gasoline and I run, the hem of my long dress getting in the way" (Souad 106).  Souad's brother-in-law, Hussein, had set her on fire because she had sex before marriage.  This relates to Morsal's story as well because her brother had killed her for "impure moral conduct"  In the West Bank, it was immoral to even look at a boy before marriage or sneak around during the day as Souad did to see Faiez.  "Honor crimes are a taboo subject" (Souad 128).  The doctor tells Jacqueline this while she is trying to save Souad in the hospital.  In the West Bank, everyone believed that you should be killed if you had sex before marriage. 

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Summary- Burned Alive

Summary- Burned Alive | Burned Alive | Scoop.it

Burned Alive Summary

Loreen Labana's insight:

Burned Alive is a true story based off of Souad's life.  She escaped from an "honor killing" inflicted by her own brother-in-law.  Souad and her family grew up in the West Bank, a region occupied by the Israelis.  Women there were treated very poorly.  They were thought of as less than animals and had to do all the work around the house while the brothers were envied and looked up upon.  Women were beaten brutally on a daily basis by their fathers and brothers.  Souad was a victim of this abuse.  Women could not leave the house unless they were fetching water or milking the cows.  They could also not look a man in the eye or have sex until marriage.  If a women disobeyed these rules, they would be seen as a "charmuta" and would be punished severely, most of the time put to death by their own family members.  Souad committed her "crime" at the age of seventeen.  Souad believed she was in love and began communicating with her neighbor Faiez.  While her parents were out, they would meet up secretly.  Souad discovered that she was pregnant and told Faiez.  They began discussing marriage but Faiez did not have the courage to speak with Souad's father because he was very violent.  Souad's family found out that she was pregnant and arranged to kill her.  One day while Sauod's parents and siblings were out and she was washing clothes outside, her brother-in-law came over to her.  He poured gasoline all over her and lit a match to set her on fire.  Souad ran away crying and screaming in pain.  She ran through the garden and fell to the ground.  Two women near by spotted her and began patting her with towels to get rid of the fire.  They took her to a hospital where Souad was falling in and out of consciousness.  A lady by the name of Jacqueline, who traveled around the world and helped save abused women, wanted to help Souad.  She devoted her time to saving her and her baby boy, Marouan, whom she had delivered in the hospital.  She took Souad to Europe and gave her an education.  Souad gives away Marouan so that he can live a better life then she had.  She ends up getting married and has two children.  She decides whether or not to tell her children that they have a brother.  She then writes the story of her life.


The scopes I will focus on are honor killings, marriage traditions in Palestine, and SURGIR.  These three topics effect Souad's life in many ways.  For example, "A girl must be married before she can raise her eyes and look straight ahead, or go into a shop, or pluck her eyebrows and wear jewelry" (Souad 1).  In Palestine, marriage traditions are much different than what Americans are used to.  A woman does not have much freedom until she is married.  The men there were very violent and women were looked down upon.  In Burned Alive, Jacqueline says,  "I heard about girls being murdered by their own families because they had had contact with a boy" (Souad 119).  This quote represents honor killings.  Families in the West Bank would turn on their daughters if they had come in contact with a boy before marriage.  Fortunately, there are organizations that help these women escape from their hard lives.  When Souad was saved and taken to Europe she did a favor to Jacqueline by informing others about how women are treated in her country.  "SURGIR is a courageous organization and is working hard to help these girls" (Souad 194).  She encouraged others to help join the organization and help save any women that may be suffering in the West Bank.

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Death in the West Bank: the story of an 'honour' killing

Death in the West Bank: the story of an 'honour' killing | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
The brutal murder of a young Palestinian woman shocked a nation and helped change the law over so-called 'honour' killings.
Loreen Labana's insight:

This is an article about a Palestinian woman named Aya Baradiya.  Her brother, Okab, had put a plastic bag over the young woman's head and thrown her, alive, to the bottom of the well. He told police that he disapproved of her relationship with her fiancé.  Her death destroyed the rest of her family.

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Switzerland, Europe

Switzerland, Europe | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

After Souad was burned by her brother-in-law, Jacqueline saved her and Marouan and  took them to Europe.  There, Souad met Antonio whom she had two children with.  She still hides there today in fear that her family will come back to kill her.

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Israel Matzav: Interview with woman who escaped 'honor killing' in 'Palestinian territories'

Israel Matzav: Interview with woman who escaped 'honor killing' in 'Palestinian territories' | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

This video is an interview with Souad, the author of the book Burned Alive.  She talks about her life in Jordan and how her brother-in-law set her on fire because she had sex before marriage and was pregnant.  She also talks about how women could not go out in public or look at a man in the eye or they would be considered a "charmuta"  The host says, "So, what we call an honor crime is not a crime, for them it is normal…" and Souad replies saying, "Yes it is totally normal because we live in that.  We are born into that."  In many parts of the Middle East, women are born into being the workers and hated in the family while their brothers are honored and loved.  Honor crimes are very common there and they do not even consider it a crime there to kill their own family members.


Souad's past relates to how the Middle East is today.  There are still honor killings that occur in areas like Jordan, Palestine, the West Bank, Gaza, and more.  The most recent honor killing was an 18-year-old Islam al-Shami.  She was stabbed in the neck with a kitchen knife while she was praying in her room.  Her 21-year-old brother was arrested and later told the police that he killed his sister to the defend the family honor, according to his rights group.  Although men are now getting arrested and put in prison because of these honor killings, they are still happening very often.

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Wedding Traditions in Palestine

Wedding Traditions in Palestine | Burned Alive | Scoop.it

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Loreen Labana's insight:

This article talks about Palestinian wedding practices and rituals.  They are inspired by rational and ideological influences that are embedded within Arab social values and conventional beliefs.  "Weddings are an accumulation of rearing practices and moral ethics among the Arabs, both those living in the East within the confines of the Arab World, and those who are spread around the globe" (The Palestinian Wedding Practices and Rituals).  Once you are married, you may not get divorced.  "This is done for many reasons: to preserve the balance between males and females within the population and to prevent girls from becoming spinsters, which might lead them to sexual delinquency, considered a taboo in our conservative communities that strictly forbid girls from practicing sex outside marriage" (The Palestinian Wedding Practices and Rituals).  "A wedding is the most important occasion to perform many practices that cannot be realized outside the boundaries of this ceremony. It is considered a connection between families, based on a common understanding and mutual respect between the parents of the bride and groom" (The Palestinian Wedding Practices and Rituals).  In Palestine, they take marriage very seriously.  Marriage brings the two families together.


These wedding practices and rituals relate to Christianity.  In Christian culture, they believe that you should not have sex before marriage.  They also believe that you may not get divorced.  "Everyone who divorced his wife and married another commits adultery, and he who married a women divorced from her husband commits adultery" (Luke 16:18).  They also believe that marriage is bringing the two families together and creating a mutual respect for each other.  It is often one of the most important occasions of their lifetime.  In Palestine, marriages are often arranged by the parents of the bride and groom.  In Christian culture, you do not see that very often but it does happen sometimes.  "We oftentimes hear the saying that a woman leaves the house twice in her life: the first time is to go to her husband’s home, and the second time when she dies and is carried to the cemetery" (The Palestinian Wedding Practices and Rituals).  This quote implies that a woman should be patient and tolerant with her husband no matter how harsh he is and she should stay home at any circumstances.  In Christian culture, they also believe this.

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Palestine/West Bank

Palestine/West Bank | Burned Alive | Scoop.it
Loreen Labana's insight:

Souad grew up in the West Bank.  The West Bank is in the middle of Israel and Jordan.  Throughout the book, there was a war going on between Palestine and Israel.  Souad later ended up in Europe and took care of her children there.

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