Segments in this Video

Slow Changes for Women in Afghanistan (02:45)


Although the Taliban no longer rules Afghanistan, the women still cover themselves in public out of convention and fear. Karmela Amini runs the cafeteria at Baghe Zanana, or Garden of Women, in Kabul, which the European Union helps to fund.

Therapist Sargona Akhmadzai (03:31)

Psychologist Sargona Akhmadzai helps the women at Baghe Zanana cope with the emotional and psychological scars from the war. She listens to stories of domestic violence and humiliation the women and their daughters still face.

Baghe Zanana: A Place for Shelter and Hope (03:28)

Baghe Zanana serves as a shelter for thousands of women. In the Garden of the Women, they can be themselves and build their self-confidence. War has made the entire society hostile, and this behavior rubs off onto the children.

Baghe Zanana: A Place for Employment and Education (03:06)

War widows work in Baghe Zanana, the only place they can find work. Karmela Amini's children take English courses at the Garden before going to school. The Garden requires security guards since some people oppose it and the idea of women achieving self-reliance.

Nilofer Saedi: Traditional Life and Public Life (03:51)

Women like Radio Arman reporter Nilofer Saedi slowly establish a presence in Kabul public life dominated by men. Her home life, where she submits to her husband's will, contrasts but does not contradict her work at the radio station.

Karmela and Sargona: Two Different Lifestyles in Kabul (03:47)

Karmela Amini, her husband, and five children maintain Spartan living conditions as they save to buy their own home. Sargona Akhmadzai attends a party for women where the men cook outside for the partygoers.

Women Prisoners in Kabul (04:45)

Sargona Akhmadzai works towards equal rights for women. She visits a women's prison, where most of the inmates are not criminals. Some women are imprisoned for refusing to an arranged marriage. Suicide rates are high among the women.

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Stories of Women in Kabul

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The producers of this program were granted unlimited access to Kabul’s Baghe Zanana, or Garden of Women—perhaps the only public place in Afghanistan where men are not welcome. Here, women can gather, dance, and remove their burqas without fear of violence or alienation. In stark contrast, a women’s prison is also visited. The courageous figures who inhabit these settings—including a resident therapist who conducts support groups for the frightened and the traumatized, and a cafeteria employee struggling to improve her family’s living conditions—demonstrate how far Afghanistan must go to overcome its repressive and war-ravaged history. A Deutsche Welle Production. (27 minutes)

Length: 28 minutes

Item#: BVL35359

ISBN: 978-1-4213-3195-9

Copyright date: ©2004

Closed Captioned

Reviews & Awards

Featured in the Middle East Studies Association (MESA) 2006 FilmFest.

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