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issues

career, issues, life, personal

Work-life balance is not a “women’s issue”

I’ve lost track of panels I’ve attended with women leaders and activists – who are invited to speak about their careers, accomplishments, and lessons learned – where the conversation almost inevitably skews to questions about work life balance. And quite often, the questions are asked by other women (often younger women) who want to know how to achieve similar success, but also have a life at home. But rarely have I attended a panel about careers where men are asked how they manage to balance their life at home with their career ambitions. And I don’t think I can recall a…

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issues, social change

Heartbroken by Ferguson

The open letter from the protestors will always stick with me: For 108 days, we have continuously been admonished that we should “let the system work,” and wait to see what the results are. The results are in. And we still don’t have justice. This fight for the dignity of our people, for the importance of our lives, for the protection of our children, is one that did not begin Michael’s murder and will not end with this announcement. The ‘system’ you have told us to rely on has kept us on the margins of society. This system has housed us in her…

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issues, legal empowerment, public interest law

TEDx Talk on Access to Justice

I wanted to share a fantastic TEDx talk I just encountered focused on why you should care about access to justice. I think he articulates, pretty well, why I think access to justice is simply so important and why governments should prioritize and fund legal services for the poor. I also loved his idea of a universal legal services/access to justice fund; though I don’t think we’re there politically, it sounds like a fantastic suggestion.

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human rights, issues, women's rights

Equality Now’s new report on child marriage

As part of a legal report I’m currently writing covering Muslim women’s legal rights in India, I have had to deal with the considerable and overlapping laws relating to child marriage, as well as the reality and commonality of child marriage here in India. This new report by international women’s rights organization, Equality Now, “Protecting the Girl Child” provides an excellent overview on how we can utilize the law to end child, early, and forced marriage. One thing I keep struggling with is the implementation gap, and this report provides some great suggestions on turning the laws on the books…

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career, issues, personal, women's rights

Leaning In: Grappling with Privilege & Structural Reform

In reading Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg, I found many lessons that were highly applicable to my own life. Her words provided encouragement to stay confident and to push forward for my dream career rather than stepping back at a young age to focus instead on family and marriage. And yet, I found myself ultimately deeply skeptical of her intrinsic argument for a variety of reasons.  First, although Sandberg herself acknowledges this, her book largely applies only to the 1% — to privileged women who have had the opportunity to pursue higher education…

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issues, personal

An autumn of questioning and the fear of forgetting

October has slowly crept in, enveloping me in Boston’s fresh and crisp air, leaves that are slowly changing to a deep red or a bright yellow that crunch beneath my feet. Autumn may bring with it many cliches – like pumpkin spice lattes, the smell of hot apple cider, and the bringing out of scarves, boots, and leggings. Yet, in some ways, I am still in denial, continuing to wear sandals and flats, and refusing to take out my fall jackets. Perhaps I have not yet let go of this summer; I am not yet ready to move on. Sometimes,…

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issues, social change

To Boston, With Love

I could’ve been there — I could’ve been at the marathon, cheering on friends and strangers as they crossed the finish line. I could’ve been there, marveling at the resilience of the human spirit, celebrating the strength and determination and passion that the sport of running demands. Marathons represent some of the most incredible things about humans — hard work, dedication, the ability to go on when things get really hard. The bombing destroyed a day of celebration and excitement, of positivity and patriotism as well. I could’ve been there, and the victims could’ve been people I knew. Perhaps that’s…

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issues, women's rights

Incredible images from Afghanistan

Check out ArtWorks Project’s Afghanistan exhibit.All the images below are copyrighted to their website. Incredible exhibit…showing the different sides of Afghanistan:   It hasn’t worked out properly yet for me, but I hope, hope and hope to return someday… to this amazing, diverse and multifaceted place. Afghanistan’s women are beautiful, in all the struggles they face. Check out the exhibit to witness this strength and diversity.

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career, issues, personal, social change, women's rights

Leaning In

In law school, raising your hand is a competition. Hands shoot up every second, thoughts are formulated rapidly with no room for deep thinking, and the spotlight is on you as eighty of your classmates train their eyes on you — often to raise their hand and proffer a counterpoint in the next minute. Professors call you out (the “socratic method”) and can question you about the minutiae of each case. This can be a hostile environment, especially for those of us who prefer to think in writing than in speech. At my core, I am a writer. I express…

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issues, social change

Hopeful once again

Yesterday, on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, it was an apt day for the inauguration of our country’s first black President. I did not have the chance to attend the inauguration in D.C., but as always, I was inspired by President Obama’s speech, and by his words and hopes for the future. The President spoke about the next challenges facing our generation: climate change, gay rights, international development, and foreign policy. I especially loved his take on development — as justice, not charity: “And we must be a source of hope to the poor, the sick, the marginalized, the victims…

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