Malala – A Girl with a Book 12+
by Nick Wood
Recommended for people aged 12+ and grades 6 to 13
Malala Yousafzai is probably the youngest campaigner for human rights in history. She has been fighting against the ban on education for girls in her home country Pakistan since 2008. At the age of eleven she started a blog for the BBC about her life under the Taliban. In October 2012, at the age of 15, she was shot on her way to school by Taliban terrorists. Her story shook the world. The bullet was shot from a very short range and hit her in the head but by some miracle she survived.
The Taliban wanted to silence her, but they achieved just the opposite. Now world famous, she continues her determined fight for the right to education. In 2014 she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. On her 16th birthday she held her first public speech before the United Nations, which reflects her courage:
“The terrorists thought they would change my aims and stop my ambitions. But nothing changed in my life except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born. I am the same Malala. My ambitions are the same. My hopes are the same. And my dreams are the same.”
Through his monologue »Malala – A Girl with a Book«, which is addressed to a young audience, the prizewinning British author Nick Wood inquisitively deals with the story of this extraordinary girl. In his play a writer cautiously approaches Malala’s story from our Western perspective. She collects blog entries and newspaper articles, confronts her own prejudices against Islam, and for brief moments manages to bring home everyday and extraordinary events from Malala’s life. This play shows that the courageous action of a single person can be decisive for the way we see the world.