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Lost Decency, the Untold Afghan Story
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Lost Decency, the Untold Afghan Story

4.33  ·  Rating Details ·  42 Ratings  ·  16 Reviews
Atta's thrilling and inspiring story uncovers the truth about how his beloved and once-peaceful nation turned into one of the deadliest and most dangerous in the world. Every refugee's story deserves to be heard, but many memoirs written by exiles represent the country's more privileged classes with money and means. In Lost Decency, Atta Arghandiwal shares the Afghan ...more
Paperback, 282 pages
Published 2012 by Lost Decency Press
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Henk-Jan van der Klis
Nov 18, 2012 Henk-Jan van der Klis rated it really liked it
Where The Kite Runner and 1,000 Splendid Suns (Khaled Hosseini) tell their own Afghan story, Atta Arghandiwal has a a lifeline worth telling too. In his Lost Decency the author takes you with him from the developments in the 50s, the Shah and relative freedom to the occupations by the Russians and the Taliban in more recent years. Where Atta succeeded in fleeing the country and buidling up a new life in Germany and the US, many weren't that lucky. Afghanistan, once beloved and peaceful nation, ...more
Lawrence Verigin
Jan 19, 2015 Lawrence Verigin rated it it was amazing
I was moved by the story of Mr. Arghandiwal’s struggles and accomplishments. Tight and concise writing makes the chronological flow of the book interesting and thought provoking. People (like myself) who have lived in North America all our lives sometimes take for granted the freedom and security we have and forget the struggles people in other countries not as fortunate have to endure.
I would have really liked to experience the Afghanistan that Mr. Arghandiwal grew up in. It is sad what the co
Nov 15, 2012 Edreece rated it it was amazing
This is a charming book that I have learned much from. Being a first generation Afghan American comes with misunderstandings of the past. This book put things in perspective and has allowed me to appreciate where I come from. Lost Decency has inspired me to create memories throughout my life and to never take things for granted. I hope that I can give back to the Afghan people one day. Thank you for inspiring me.
Colin Mallard
Apr 03, 2014 Colin Mallard rated it it was amazing

Is well titled given the content—It’s the story of a man growing up in Afghanistan in a world quite different from the country described in the news today. The author paints a picture of a beautiful land and the people who lived there before the Soviet Invasion and subsequent American involvement.

He describes a country where large extended families were the norm and a benevolent expression of Islam formed the context or approach to life. Women were appreciated, respected and cared fo
Val Walton
Apr 30, 2014 Val Walton rated it it was amazing
Lost Decency describes Afghanistan before the Russian invasion, when Islam had not leaned into fundamentalism and women were respected and had freedom to attend schools. Atta described his experiences when Communism, followed by the Russian invasion, devastated the culture.

His description of the airplanes which droned overhead for days bringing the invading army was very powerful. As was the speed at which an open friendly society became one governed by fear and secrecy.

Atta emigrated to Germa
Apr 27, 2014 Randy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lost Decency is the story of heartbreak. It is about a proud and progressive nation and its people and the external forces which sought to subjugate its citizens. The invasion of Afghanistan by Russia was, to say the least, a difficult and dangerous time. Once promising futures had to be set aside. The personal goal became the defence of a homeland. The Russian withdrawal did not result in times of peace. We are painfully aware of the the continuous spiral of violent tragedy the Afghanistan ...more
Feb 17, 2013 Gary rated it it was amazing
When I started to read Lost Decency I immediately became mesmerized, it was very difficult to put down. It is written in a way that you feel like you are there. It is a story about a journey that a family needed to make to survive. I read this book in two days. Reading a book by someone who was born there and had to leave a country he loved was just heartbreaking. Anybody that reads this book will get a better understanding of the tragic of our current times, what war does to a country and why ...more
Betsy Fasbinder
Mar 06, 2013 Betsy Fasbinder rated it really liked it
It's such a rare gift for an American, a "Westerner", to get such a personal and insightful peek into the world of Afghanistan. This is not the CNN viewpoint, but the intimate experience of one who grew up in this fascinating and mysterious part of the world. Arghandiwal is telling of living with his family, working a job, enduring what was going on around him right at the the crucial time of change for his country. A true insider's story, detailed and moving.
Jan 22, 2013 Carla rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoir
This book is the story of a man who lived through the changes in Afghanistan. He grew up in the period when Afghanistan was a tourist destination and a country in the process of modernizing. Atta left after the invasion by the Russians, starting a long period as a refugee, first in Germany, than in the United States. This book was a very interesting read, but it was very sad to see the decline of an entire people.
Kelly Dinicolo
Mar 19, 2013 Kelly Dinicolo rated it really liked it
Overall, I really liked this book. I learned a lot about a country which although in our news for much recently, it was difficult to understand from the point of view of an immigrant. I would have liked to better understand the current state-it seemed to be glossed over some which may have more to do with the short time the author had on his return visit. Still, I would recommend this book for those interested in learning about this country and its people.
Mariam R.
Nov 17, 2012 Mariam R. rated it it was amazing
Being from Afghanistan, I felt a strong connection to this book. It touched on the aspects that I embraced and cherished so much as a young adult growing up in a transitional Afghanistan. I hope that there is a more hopeful future for our Afghan people. Thank you for doing us all a service!! This is a must read!!
Trisha Law
Jun 09, 2013 Trisha Law rated it it was amazing
WOW... this book is enlightening and fascinating while maintaining the truth of Atta's life. I absolutely loved it, and was unable to put it down. Truely an outstanding memoir... I would recommend to anyone interested in history or Afghan culture. A must read.
(Received from Goodreads)
Shantel DuBois
Dec 10, 2012 Shantel DuBois rated it it was amazing
Great book! It is an amazing story of survival. But most importantly, provides unbiased realities that not only impact the people of Afghanistan but the loss of thousands of American troops and billions of wasted dollars. A must read for all!
Jan 27, 2013 Diane rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
A beautiful and inspiring memoir as well as a book that will be a real education for most Americans. Lost Decency goes a long way towards promoting understanding and reclaiming the dignity of the Afghan people.
Georgina Katapotis
Georgina Katapotis rated it it was amazing
Dec 05, 2012
Shelly rated it it was amazing
Nov 17, 2012
Anosha Zereh
Anosha Zereh rated it really liked it
Oct 03, 2014
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Oct 16, 2014
Mary Schneider
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Feb 15, 2013
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Jun 11, 2014
Influencepub rated it it was amazing
Aug 14, 2014
Homayon Ahmadi
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Dec 06, 2015
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Mar 31, 2015
Sevita Abdul
Sevita Abdul rated it it was amazing
Dec 02, 2014
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Melvin Patterson rated it it was amazing
Dec 12, 2014
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Dec 23, 2013
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May 12, 2013
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Oct 12, 2013
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I was born in Kabul Afghanistan but spent a majority of my life in the United States. After witnessing unexpected political changes beginning with the 1978 communist coup de at, and ultimate invasion by Soviet Union, I left my country in August of 1980 and became a refugee in Germany. I later immigrated to the United States in December of 1981 and was able to land a job as a teller at a bank where ...more
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“Lost Decency (a memoir) covers three phases of Afghanistan's last 50 years (Where it was? What Happened and Where it is headed?)” 1 likes
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