LEFT COAST WRITERS FERRY PLAZA BOOK PARTY: Laila El-Sissi, Author of Out From The Shadow Of Men
“The shadow of a man is better than a roof over the head.”
This Arabic proverb has long described the plight of women in Egypt. Like the classic Pyramids of Giza, the culture of Egypt for the most part stands unchanged. Egyptian men continue to use the banner of Islam and antiquated interpretation of the Quran to justify controlling women. Egyptian women continue to believe God has ordered men to do so. Yet Laila El-Sissi broke the pattern.
Forty years ago, when Laila, a shy and malleable 15-year-old, and her more rebellious 16-year-old sister Rawyia learn that they are betrothed to men they have never met, they refused to live in the prison constructed by their society, hoping for a better life than that of their mothers and aunts. Running from their tyrannical father, an abusive brother, and arranged marriages to men twice their age, Laila (more…)