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Private Pakistani Schools Ban Malala Yousafzai's Book



From VOA Learning English, this is the Education Report.

Private schools in Pakistan have barred their libraries from possessing a book by a young education activist. Malala Yousafzai campaigned against Taliban attempts to bomb schools for girls in the Swat district, where she was born. In October of 2012, attackers pulled her from a school bus and shot her in the head. She received medical treatment in Britain.

The 16-year-old activist shared her memories of Pakistan in the new book "I Am Malala." It is currently one of the best-selling books in the world. In Pakistan, the book has been met with both criticism and praise. Private school officials have accused Malala Yousafzai of insulting her homeland. They say she was a "propaganda tool of the West." They also say parts of the book dishonor Islam.

Pervez Hoodbhoy works at Quaid-e-Azam University in Islamabad. He and other rights activists defend the Pakistani teenager. They say Taliban supporters are misrepresenting the book. Mr. Hoodbhoy says the Taliban has accused her of saying in the book that the Ahmadis, a religious minority, are Muslims. He says she was simply stating that the Ahmadis are oppressed. He also says she has been wrongly accused of defending British writer Salman Rushdie. His 1988 book, "The Satanic Verses" angered many Muslims around the world. Mr. Hoodbhoy says the fact that Salman Rushdie is unwelcome in Pakistan shows a culture that lacks acceptance for the opinions of others.

Malala Yousafzai has spoken publicly about her family's strong Muslim religious faith. She was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2013.

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