Based on a true story, international bestseller Not Without My Daughter is a heroic and inspiring story of author Betty Mahmoody?s courage and determination to stand up for herself against her husband, and depicts her daring escape out of Iran, along with her daughter.
Summary Of The Book
Not Without My Daughter is based on a true story which describes the author?s harrowing experiences from the period 1984-86. When Betty Mahmoody leaves her home in Michigan, USA, to accompany her husband, Dr. Sayed Bozorg Mahmoody, an Iranian immigrant, and their four year old daughter Mahtob, to visit his family in Tehran, Iran, on what is supposed to be a two-week holiday, she has no idea about her husband?s real intentions.
At the end of the two weeks, her husband refuses to let them leave, leaving her in shock as he coldly warns her that she would never leave Iran for the rest of her life. Held against their will in an alien land, where she and her daughter are often threatened by an abusive husband and his family, and made to live in squalor in a hostile country where Americans are viewed with utmost suspicion, the brutal reality of her situation slowly begins to dawn on her and she feels desperate to escape back to her home in the US.
At a time when Iran is under Khomeini?s rule, with its strict laws and dictatorial attitude towards women, expecting them to be subservient, and laying restrictions on how they should dress and behave, Betty is horrified and yearns to go back to the US. However, her husband threatens to harm her and her daughter if she were to try to leave. Also, under Islamic laws, Betty being married to an Iranian would be governed by their stern laws and if she were to divorce her husband, he would get sole custody of their daughter.
Not one to give up easily, she tries to come up with ways to escape out of Iran, even enlisting the help of some local folk who are against Khomeini?s dictatorial rule and sympathise with her. Most of the plans, however, require her to leave Mahtob behind, something she would never be able to do. So she relentlessly continues to pursue escape strategies, and finally embarks on a daring escape. Not Without My Daughter, the amazing story of fearless Betty?s escape to America with her daughter, was an international success and bestseller, and made into a 1991 Hollywood film of the same name, starring Sally Field.
About Betty Mahmoody
Betty Mahmoody was born in 1945 in Michigan, USA. She is an American author and a prominent public speaker. She is also the author of For The Love Of A Child. She co-founded One World: For Children, an organisation that offers to protect the rights of children of mixed culture marriages and promotes cross cultural understanding. In 1990, she received an award for the Outstanding Woman Of The Year from Oakland University.