The Beauty Academy of Kabul
Today I rented "The Beauty Academy of Kabul", a documentary film about a group of American women, including several Afghan-American women, who start a beauty school in Kabul. The film includes a short description of the recent history of Afghanistan. Some of the women who enroll in the school give glimpses into what life was like before, during, and after the time of the Taliban. Much of the footage shows the destruction from decades of war still apparent in the country.
We learn not only about the lives of the Afghan women, but also the motivations of the teachers. One of the teachers states "education is empowerment", and this certainly holds true for the students whose newly acquired skills enable them to help support their families. The teachers have a vision of not only sharing their profession, but helping to support the healing of Afghanistan, one woman at a time. Their motivation is not to spread American ideals of beauty, but to support the self-directed desire of Afghan women to improve their lives and position in society, and to pave the way for a better future for their daughters and sons.
Sabara doing hair on graduation day (reprinted with permission)