Videos of Manal




  • Barefoot in Baghdad: A Story of Identity-My Own and What It Means to Be a Woman in Chaos
    Barefoot in Baghdad: A Story of Identity-My Own and What It Means to Be a Woman in Chaos
    by Manal Omar
  • Living Islam Out Loud: American Muslim Women Speak
    Living Islam Out Loud: American Muslim Women Speak
    Beacon Press

In the Media

Reviews of Barefoot in Baghdad

East County Magazine:  Barefoot in Baghdad, an aid worker’s journey through chaos with the women of Iraq, reveals the struggles of a Muslim woman raised in America to bridge two vastly different worlds. This is a must read that I highly recommend. Full  Review

Good Reads A riveting story of hope and despair, of elation and longing, Barefoot in Baghdad takes you to the front lines of a different kind of battle, where the unsung freedom fighters are strong, vibrant—and female. An American aid worker of Arab descent, Manal Omar moves to Iraq to help as many women as she can rebuild their lives. Full Review

Story Circle Book Review :  Omar is a fluent and captivating storyteller, and I enjoyed journeying with her as she struggles to find her own identity and to work against a system that is broken and with it, breaking the fabric of women's lives.  Full Review

"Manal Omar captures the complex reality of living and working in war-torn Iraq, a reality that tells the story of love and hope in the midst of bombs and explosions."
Zainab Salbi, founder and CEO of Women for Women International, and author (with Laurie Becklund) of the national bestselling book Between Two Worlds: Escape from Tyranny: Growing Up in the Shadow of Saddam

"A fascinating, honest, and inspiring portrait of a women's rights activist in Iraq, struggling to help local women while exploring her own identity. Manal Omar is a skilled guide into Iraq, as she understands the region, speaks Arabic, and wears the veil. At turns funny and tragic, she carries a powerful message for women, and delivers it through beautiful storytelling."
Christina Asquith, author of Sisters in War: A Story of Love, Family and Survival in the New Iraq

"At turns funny and tragic…a powerful message for women,
[delivered] through beautiful storytelling."
Christina Asquith, author of Sisters in War

Barefoot in Baghdad: A Story of Identity—My Own and What It Means to Be a Woman in Chaos  Mason Spirit contributor, May 9, 2011.  Read Review

May 3rd, 2011, On ABC - Australia, Big Ideas.

All About Baghdad - interview in Levantine Center Read

Manal named among the top 500 most influential arabs by Arab Business Power in 2011

Al Watan Newspaper - Kuwait.

Named among 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World by  Georgetown University and The Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre in 2009.

Manal named one of ten young Muslim
es shaping Islam in America (Article)
The Islamic Monthly

The Feminine Fabric of Islam (website)
Sacred Circles
November, 2002
Washington National Cathedral

Islam and Feminism:  Are the barriars coming down? (Article)
Caryle Murphy
Fall 2003
Carnegie Reporter 

Veiled Interests (Article)
Lauren Sandler
August 31, 2003
The Boston Globe

Women Under Siege (Article)
Lauren Sandler
December 11, 2003
The Nation 

One Year After Fall Of Hussein, Women In Iraq Facing Many Hardships
Golnaz Esfandiari 
Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty 

The Struggle For Iraq
Neela Banjerjee
February 26, 2004
The New York Times 

After an advocate's killing, Iraqi women try to stay course (Article)
Annia Ciezadlo
April 1, 2004
Christian Science Monitor

Fern Holland's War (Article)
Elizabeth Rubin
September 19, 2004
New York Times

Firsthand Information (Listen)
January 10, 2005 
The Leonard Lopate Show

Backlash in Baghdad: An Interview with Manal Omar (Article)
Dave Gilson
January 28, 2005
Mother Jones

Iraq's Hidden War (Article)
Eve Conant
March 7, 2005

CNN Sunday Morning (Transcript)
Aired August 14, 2005

A Boom without Bombs (Article)
Ashraf Khalil
October 3, 2005
Los Angeles Times

Female Iraqi Candidates risk lives (Article)
Kathy Kiely
December 1, 2005

Alumna Helps Women in War-Torn Countries to Help Themselves (Article)
Colleen Kearney Rich
February 6, 2006
Mason Gazette

Cover Story:  Global Sisterhood The
rhetoric and the reality