Developed by: Cindy Hoagland, Liz Nicastro, and Mary Scafe


Read over the three quotes below. Choose the one which evokes the strongest reaction from you and write an essay describing how you feel about that particular quote. Be sure to use your own life experiences as you explore the quote.


  1. In Mali it is common to have 3 wives. When Helene asked one wife about this, the wife stated that, “We know how to live together as co-wives. Often it is not so and women argue and ignore each other.” (pg. 18)


  1. When one woman was asked how many children she had, she responded with, “The dead or the living?” (pg. 18) Ask yourself how you would cope with situations of loss surrounding you everyday. It may be helpful to look at the statistics attached to make comparisons.


  1. “Women are like children. Women and children do not have any conscience and need to be beaten to teach them respect.” (pg. 21) One man admits with a smile that he beats his wives when, “She does not bring the hot water in time for prayers, if food is not ready when I am hungry, if they do not welcome me warmly.” (pg. 21)