‘Brides for Sale’ song help Afghan rapper escape teen marriage
By Mirwais Adeel - Wed May 13 2015, 3:50 pm
Devastated by her parent’s decision to marry her off to a man to use her dowry money for her brother’s wedding, a teenage Afghan girl narrowly escaped teen marriage by composing and singing a rap song for forced marriages.
The song titled “Brides for Sale” touched the hearts of her parents after seeing their child in a wedding dress with a barcode on her forehead and her face bruised and pleads with her family not to sell her off.
The song starts “Let me whisper, so no one hears that I speak of selling girls. My voice shouldn’t be heard since it’s against Sharia. Women must remain silent… this is our tradition.”
Her name is Sonita Alizadeh who grew in Iran after her fled Afghanistan where she learned karate, photography, guitar in a non-profit organization that taught undocumented Afghan kids.
Her music quickly got recognition after she started singing and rapping and met an Iranian director who helped her polish up her style and make music videos, and that led to a few awards.
“It means so much to me that my family went against our tradition for me. Now I’m somewhere that I never imagined I could be,” Alizadeh quoted in a report by Public Radio International said.
The 18-year-old artist is currently in United States and continues to her studies after she was awarded a full scholarship to an arts academy in Utah.
According to reports, child marriage affects some 15 million girls every year in South – particularly in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India where marriages under the age of 16 are widespread, especially among poor families.
In addition to cultural reasons, other major contributing factors for child marriages are the settling of feuds and to pay off debts. Often, the husbands are much older than the bride.