Dawn's Reviews > In the Land of Invisible Women: A Female Doctor's Journey in the Saudi Kingdom

In the Land of Invisible Women by Qanta A. Ahmed
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Aug 06, 12

bookshelves: ebook, biography-autobiography
Read from August 06 to 07, 2012

A western Muslim doctor goes to work for a foreign government for two years. The hitch? She's a female in Saudi Arabia.

This was a surprisingly good read. While the writing is more colloquial than many like, to me it keeps they book from feeling like it was ghosted by a reporter, or edited by someone who might have a political axe to grind. It seems that this piece is exactly what it presents itself as, the story of a woman living in the rapidly changing political and social climes of Saudi Arabia.

Quanta is western raised, and a Muslim at that, but even she finds the Saudis depth of worship daunting. She presents herself as a fairly neutral narrator, appearing in some cases to act almost as a buffer between the native Saudis and the international medical staff of the facility she works in. She is perhaps, slightly over-enthusiastic in her praise of the people, but she also doesn't turn her face from some of the uglier facets of the society, touching on domestic abuse, racism, male privilege run amok and the thoughtless spending of the upper classes.

Overall what appears to be a well balanced memoir, and I recommend to those with an interest in the women's rights movements of the Middle East.
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