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Malala is born in Mingora, Pakistan. Although women are viewed as simply mothers and cooks by her community, her father celebrates her birth and places her on the family tree, He states, "I know there is something different about this child" (Yousafzai 14). Malala's father founds the first school for girls in Mingora, where Malala obtains her education. She recognizes the unfairness and sexism in her community and from an early age, Malala is both a feminist and educational activist.
The leader of the Taliban in Swat Valley, Maulana Fazlullah, states his beliefs on a popular radio station broadcast. He insist that women should stay at home all day at work, that they should not be allowed to walk outside in the evening, and that women should not receive an education. Afterwards, tensions rise in Pakistan and violence increases; Malala wrote, "They have already blown up hundreds of schools..." (Yousafzai 146). Malala and Ziauddin militate Fazlullah's ideas and followers.
While Malala is on her way to school, the Taliban stops her bus. A man asks the girls, "Who is Malala" (Yousafzai 9)? When there is no answer, he shoots Malala in her left eye and two other girls. Malala and the other girls are rushed to the hospital.
Ziauddin hears the news about the shooting and rushes to the hospital after delivering a speech. To ensure she receives the best treatment possible, she is sedated and moved to a hospital with decorum in England. Malala states, "Everything was very clean and shiny, not like the hospital in Mingora" (Yousafzai 276). However, her family is unable to go with her and she goes to England with Dr. Reynolds acting as her guardian. Her recovery is slow and frustrating, especially while she is unable to see her family. During Malala's accident and recovery, she becomes well-known throughout the entire world. After a while, Ziauddin and Tor Pekai finally fly to England.
Malala and her family live in Birmingham, England but feel homesick and wish to return to Swat Valley. Malala receives an exuberant amount of awards, and is even nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize. Although violence continues to occur in Pakistan, Malala still wishes to return to her home. However, Ziauddin reminds her of the education she is receiving in England and she knows she needs to take advantage of this asset. Malala articulates, "I want to learn and be trained well with the weapon of knowledge. Then, I will be able to fight more effectively for my cause" (Yousafzai 311).
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