I Am Malala

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Rohul Amin Character Analysis

Ziauddin’s father, Rohul Amin is an intimidatingly charismatic and articulate man. Growing up, Ziauddin is always terrified by his father, as his own embarrassing stutter stands in stark contrast with Rohul Amin’s eloquence. Rohul begins to show more respect for Ziauddin when Ziauddin overcomes his stutter and wins a series of prestigious speaking contests. Yet he quarrels with his son once again when Ziauddin fails to show the academic aptitude necessary to become a doctor. Although Ziauddin eventually finds a way to continue his education without his father’s financial support, he has an uneasy relationship with Rohul Amin for the rest of his life. Nevertheless, he allows Rohul to visit Malala. Rohul shows great affection for Malala, and his rhetorical prowess is a major influence on her own mental growth.

Rohul Amin Quotes in I Am Malala

The I Am Malala quotes below are all either spoken by Rohul Amin or refer to Rohul Amin . For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Women’s Rights Theme Icon
). Note: all page and citation info for the quotes below refers to the Back Bay Books edition of I Am Malala published in 2015.
Chapter 2 Quotes

School wasn’t the only thing my aunts missed out on. In the morning when my father was given a bowl of cream with his tea, his sisters were given only tea. If there were eggs, they would only be for the boys. When a chicken was slaughtered for dinner, the girls would get the wings and the neck while the luscious breast meat was enjoyed by my father, his brother, and my grandfather. “From early on I could feel I was different from my sisters,” my father says.

Related Characters: Malala Yousafzai (speaker), Ziauddin Yousafzai (speaker), Rohul Amin
Page Number: 29
Explanation and Analysis:

In this quotation, Malala gives details about how women are separated from men from an early age: they're even fed differently. Young boys, who supposedly need the extra nutrition to grow into strong, proud warriors for the Pashtun tribe, are given the juiciest, most delicious chicken meat, while young girls are fed the leftovers--wings and neck meat.

As the quotation makes very clear, there's nothing more intuitive for a child than eating. Therefore, for boys and girls to be fed different cuts of the chicken is a surprisingly powerful way to teach them that they're different. Over the course of years and years, boys are taught that they "deserve" better than women, with the result that they grow into men who've embraced the sexist ideas on which they were raised.

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Chapter 3 Quotes

[My father] believes strongly in freedom of speech. “First, let’s read the book and then why not respond with our own book,” he suggested. He ended by asking in a thundering voice my grandfather would have been proud of, “Is Islam such a weak religion that it cannot tolerate a book written against it? Not my Islam!”

Related Characters: Malala Yousafzai (speaker), Ziauddin Yousafzai (speaker), Rohul Amin
Page Number: 46
Explanation and Analysis:

In this section, Malala describes her father's actions during the 1980s, with regard to one of the most infamous events of the decade: the fatwah placed on the life of Salman Rushdie. Rushdie, a celebrated English-language Indian author, wrote a book called The Satanic Verses, in which he wrote about the prophet Muhammed and satirized elements of Islam. Since "depicting" Muhammed in any way was strictly taboo in Islam, there were some fundamentalist Muslims who wanted Rushdie to be punished or even killed for his book.

Yet here, Malala clarifies that while there were many Muslims who wanted to hurt Rushdie, not all did. Some, like Malala's father, Ziauddin, argued that Muslims shouldn't attack Rushdie simply because they disagreed with him. Ziauddin made it clear that he was a proper, righteous Muslim--and yet he also argued for the freedom of speech: Rushdie must be allowed to say whatever he wanted, even if many people found it offensive or heretical. The Salman Rushdie affair is still an acid test for intellectuals throughout the world: some treat the incident as proof that Islam is a fundamentally violent religion, one that can't handle any criticism of its principles. There are even some who've used the Rushdie affair to suggest that Mulsims themselves are dangerous. Yet Malala makes it clear that such assumptions are just offensive stereotypes. There were many more Muslims, such as Zaiuddin, who respected Rushdie's right to write whatever he wanted.

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Rohul Amin Character Timeline in I Am Malala

The timeline below shows where the character Rohul Amin appears in I Am Malala. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 2: My Father the Falcon
Women’s Rights Theme Icon
The Power of Education Theme Icon
...to communicate. His stutter was worsened by the fact that his own father (Malala’s grandfather), Rohul Amin, had a beautiful, clear voice. Rohul was a popular theology teacher, widely praised for... (full context)
The Power of Education Theme Icon
Goodness Theme Icon
Fame, Power, and the Importance of Role Models Theme Icon
...early twenties, he stunned his father by signing up for a public speaking competition. Although Rohul was skeptical of his son’s stutter, he wrote a speech for his son to deliver.... (full context)
Chapter 3: Growing up in a School
Women’s Rights Theme Icon
The Power of Education Theme Icon
Malala explains that Ziauddin’s decision to pursue education and poetry as a career disappointed Rohul. Rohul had wanted his son to become a doctor, but Ziauddin’s abilities in math and... (full context)
Women’s Rights Theme Icon
The Power of Education Theme Icon
Malala explains that Ziauddin found a way to be happy, despite Rohul’s refusal to pay for his further education. Ziauddin befriended a friend of his brother-in-law, Nasir... (full context)
The Power of Education Theme Icon
Goodness Theme Icon
...Ziauddin’s friends know about the wedding, he would have been unable to entertain them all. Rohul refused to pay large sums for the wedding, meaning that Ziauddin was forced to take... (full context)
Chapter 4: The Village
The Power of Education Theme Icon
...up, Malala’s parents noticed that she had the qualities of both of her grandfathers: like Rohul, she was vocal, and like Tor Pekai’s grandfather, she was calm and wise. Malala loved... (full context)