Half the Sky

Meena Hasina Character Analysis

Meena Hasina is a former forced prostitute in Forbesgunge, India. She had two children, Naina and Vivek, while held captive in a brothel. She eventually escaped and married a man named Kuduz, had two more children, and rescued Naina and Vivek with the help of an aid group. Her narrative in the book ends happily—her children are in a boarding school, and she works to combat the same forced prostitution that entrapped her.

Meena Hasina Quotes in Half the Sky

The Half the Sky quotes below are all either spoken by Meena Hasina or refer to Meena Hasina. 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:
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of Half the Sky published in 2010.
Chapter 1 Quotes

People always ask how they can help...A starting point is to be brutally realistic about the complexities of achieving change. To be blunt, humanitarians sometimes exaggerate and oversell, eliding pitfalls. They sometimes torture frail data until it yields the demanded ‘proof’ of success.

Related Characters: Nicholas D. Kristof (speaker), Sheryl WuDunn (speaker), Meena Hasina
Page Number: 17
Explanation and Analysis:
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Meena Hasina Character Timeline in Half the Sky

The timeline below shows where the character Meena Hasina appears in Half the Sky. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
The Complexity of Aid Theme Icon
...Nepal, where sex is one of few things for sale. The authors introduce us to Meena Hasina, a former trafficked prostitute, who strolls down a village path, completely relaxed while people... (full context)
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
The Complexity of Aid Theme Icon
Solutions to Address the Oppression of Women Theme Icon
The text returns to Meena, who had two babies in captivity, Naina and Vivek, whom she was almost never allowed... (full context)
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
Kuduz and Meena soon fell in love, then married and had two children. But, Meena was still determined... (full context)
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
The Complexity of Aid Theme Icon
...they have awakened to the prevalence of forced prostitution due to interviews with women like Meena. The common term “sex trafficking” is a misnomer, they explain, since trafficking refers to the... (full context)
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
The Complexity of Aid Theme Icon
Solutions to Address the Oppression of Women Theme Icon
The chapter returns to Meena’s children, Naina and Vivek, who had brutal upbringings with no schooling and were confused about... (full context)
The Oppression of Women  Theme Icon
Universal Benefits of Women’s Empowerment  Theme Icon
The Complexity of Aid Theme Icon
Solutions to Address the Oppression of Women Theme Icon
The family was reunited, but Meena, as a former prostitute, was still stigmatized by the community and in danger of retaliation... (full context)