Last Girl (Murad) - Discussion Questions

Discussion Questions
We'll add publisher questions if and when they're available; in the meantime, use our LitLovers talking points to help start a discussion for The Last Girl … then take off on our own:

1. Discuss the ancient Yazidi religion with its creation myths, visions of afterlife, and its various customs. How did Nadia Murad's faith help sustain her during her ordeal?

2. Talk about the treatment of the Yazidi people throughout history, including the many occurrences of genocide. Why have Yazidis been the object of persecution? In fact, why has religious sectarianism— throughout history—been so virulent and led to such violence?

3. How did the Yazidi's lives improve with the initial 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq. How did it worsen after the dismantling of the Baathist institutions?

4. ONce she escapee, Murad was required by the Kurd officials to testify, and despite assurances of privacy, the tape was made public. "I was quickly learning," she observed, "that my story, which I still thought of as a personal tragedy, could be someone else’s political tool." What were the Kurd officials hoping to achieve by airing the tape, and in what way did it endanger Nasser and his family?

5. What tricky issues did/does Murad face in publishing such an incendiary, if not sensational, book?

6. Follow-up to Question 5: Murad's story is almost too much to bear. Yet she was only one among thousands of women who suffered at the hands of ISIS. How important is it for us to read The Last Girl? Do you feel hopeless after reading it—or does it give you hope that her story has come to light?

7. Murad expresses fury and bafflement at the way families carried on with their normal lives under ISIS while all around them Yazidi women were subjected to horrific treatment. Where else have we heard similar reports of apathy in the face of atrocity? Is it human nature? Is it fear? Why are we so prone to ignore the horrors that take place under our noses?

(Questions by LitLovers. Please feel free to use them, online and off, with attribution. Thanks.)

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