Finding Acclaim in the Conservative Islamic Culture of Afghanistan
This chapter deals with the life and career of Zainab Herawi. She began her singing career as a child apprentice in the Herat region of Afghanistan in the 1940s, within the context of a class-based society, where singing by women was considered to be morally questionable. Zainab's is a story of unfulfilled fame because, although she was invited to sing for Kabul Radio when twenty-seven, family and background pressures and constraints led to her returning home, where she continued to sing for wedding celebrations. As a series of choices and struggles involving the interfacing domains of family, location, religion, and vocality, her life as a local singer with a large family was one of frequent anguish and frustration; yet her songs live on in the narratives and performances of musician and scholar Veronica Doubleday.
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