Know Safa Idriss Nour (then & now)
Super model Waris Dirie Somali model insisted Safa Idriss Nour, the child who played her suffering FGM in biopic, had to be spared the same fate
When she was three years old, Safa Idriss Nour received something no girl in her slum in Djibouti had been given before – a signed contract from her parents stating they would never inflict genital mutilation on her.
In Djibouti, in the Horn of Africa, an estimated 98% of girls and women have undergone female genital mutilation (FGM), a procedure that usually involves cutting off the clitoris and some of the labia, so this was a remarkable event. Equally remarkable is the story of how Nour came to get the contract and, indeed, of her battle to ensure that her parents stuck to the terms of the deal.
Nour starred in a film adaptation of Desert Flower, the international bestselling autobiography by Somali model and anti-FGM activist Waris Dirie. Published in 1997, her first book follows Dirie from her birth into a nomadic family in Somalia – from whom she fled, aged 13, after her father attempted to marry her to a 60-year-old man – to her becoming an international supermodel.
In 2007, Nour was asked to play the young Dirie as she undergoes FGM – on condition that her parents sign a contract agreeing never to perform the same ritualistic operation on her (keep reading)
An abandoned junkyard dog walks 4 miles to the other side of town every day where she goes to get fed by a woman named Lucia. One day Lilica grabbed the plastic bag she was fed in, and ran. Food spilling everywhere.
Lucia decided to follow her and see what was going on. She discovered that Lilica was saving the food to share with her starving friends at the junkyard. Now Lucia ties the bag for Lilica. Some things are worth being explained.
I’m fucking crying
Meet Jedidah Isler
She is the first black woman to earn a PhD in astronomy from Yale University.
As much as she loves astrophysics, Isler is very aware of the barriers that still remain for young women of color going into science. “It’s unfortunately an as-yet-unresolved part of the experience,” she says. She works to lower those barriers, and also to improve the atmosphere for women of color once they become scientists, noting that “they often face unique barriers as a result of their position at the intersection of race and gender, not to mention class, socioeconomic status and potentially a number of other identities.”
While Isler recounts instances of overt racial and gender discrimination that are jaw-dropping, she says more subtle things happen more often. Isler works with the American Astronomical Society’s commission on the status of minorities in astronomy.
She also believes that while things will improve as more women of color enter the sciences, institutions must lead the way toward creating positive environments for diverse student populations. That is why she is active in directly engaging young women of color: for example participating in a career exploration panel on behalf of the Women’s Commission out of the City of Syracuse Mayor’s Office, meeting with high-achieving middle-school girls. She is also on the board of trustees at the Museum of Science and Technology (MOST).
“Whether I like it or not, I’m one of only a few women of color in this position,” she says. “Addressing these larger issues of access to education and career exploration are just as important as the astrophysical work that I do.”
BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOST YES DAMMIT!
sending this straight to featured #science cause fuck yeah BW + Astrophysics.
Black Excellence, just amazing! I hope she keeps succeeding!