The Breadwinner Summary
A girl named Parvana is living in an apartment with her family which includes her father, her mother, named Fatima, older sister, named Nooria, younger sister, named Maryam, and baby brother ,named Ali .They all live in Kabul, Afghanistan. Parvana’s father is the only one authorized to work in the family but due to a leg that was injured in a bombing, he has a hard time working. Parvana goes with her father to the Marketplace where he works, reading and writing letters in Pashtu and Dari–due to the war and Taliban control, many people are illiterate, and need assistance reading and writing. One day Talibs come to Parvana’s home and take her father away because he attended university in England. When Parvana tries to bring home food, a Talib sees her and chases her. Parvana is forced to cut her hair and dress as a boy because women were not allowed to work. She becomes the family’s breadwinner, wearing her dead brother Hussein’s clothes.
Parvana runs into girl that she used to go to school with named Shauzia who has been put through the same experience. They start to work together and soon become close friends. They were never that close in school but they are now trying to figure out ways to earn more money. She also meets a family friend named Mrs. Weera, a former physical education teacher who comes to stay with Parvana’s family and takes charge of the household because Parvana’s mother has become severely depressed over the loss of her husband. With the help of her friend, Parvana’s mother begins to feel better and eventually teams up with her and a group of other women to write the Afghanistan National Magazine, smuggling it to and from Pakistan to be published. Throughout the book Parvana grows closer to her older sister Nooria, and becomes more responsible and stronger emotionally as a person. She also becomes very close with a woman who appears in the window of a building behind where Parvana works. This woman throws small gifts onto her blanket while she is there.
... than not, women's work interferes with family while for men family interferes with work (Bianchi 171). This is because women tend to put family first, and ... to this. Perhaps if employers provided better day care or fathers helped a little more at home, a mother could feel ... why working mothers today have more stress than working fathers. Mothers may work in an office from nine to five, but their ...
The climax of the story comes when Parvana’s seventeen year old sister Nooria announces that she is leaving for Mazar-e Sharif to get married to a boy (an neibour), because there is no war and she will be going to college. She leaves along with her mother and younger siblings, but Parvana stays since she looks like a boy and her appearance will be difficult to explain and be kept secret. Despite being against it at first, Parvana grows to accept her sister’s decision.
Parvana remains in Kabul with Mrs. Weera. One day after work, she meets a runaway girl from Mazar who is deeply upset. Parvana leads her home at night, and soon the girl, named Homa, tells them that Mazar has been captured by the Taliban. Homa’s family had been killed by the Taliban, and she had been extremely lucky to run away. Mrs. Weera gladly takes her in. Parvana is very worried since the rest of her family is going there.
One day, Parvana’s father returns home, being led by two kind men who found him released from jail, but unable to get home due to the loss of his leg. The women and Parvana nurse him back to health, and the novel ends with Parvana and her father escaping Afghanistan, hidden in the back of a truck. They will search for their family in refugee camps. Shauzia, who had been planning to run away from her difficult family so that she would not have to marry and could start a new life, tells Parvana that she will be leaving with some shepherds. They plan to meet in France twenty years later, at the top of the Eiffel Tower