Desert Flower

What an award winning performance by, Liya Kebede, as she portrays the life of Waris Dirie. Waris Dirie is a famous model who became outspoken about the practice of Female Genital Mutilation.

The story of Ms. Waris is both thought provoking and inspirational, as she tenaciously beats the odds against her through a cultural practice of the life she was born into. Desert Flower portrays a 13 year old Somali who left her home to avoid an arranged marriage to an older man. The journey through the deserts of Somalia leads her to London where she struggles through various trials eventually leading to her discovery by British fashion photographer Terence Donovan and becoming one of the world’s most famous fashion models.

The movie Desert Flower was adapted from Ms. Waris book which shares the same title, written in 1998. The movie highlights several hurdles Waris had to conquer to get where she is today. The movie's pivotal scene was when Waris revealed to her friend (played by Sally Hawkins) that she had undergone genital mutilations as part of her custom, this eventually leads to a worldwide campaign effort to end Female Genital Mutilation, leading Ms. Waris Dirie to become a spokesperson for the United Nations on the issues dealing with Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

Waris Dirie heads the Desert Flower Foundation.

This film deals with a very sensitive subject, one that has gained world wide attention.

The World Health Organization has released it's fact sheet in February 2012 concerning Female Genital Mutilation.

Written by J.Allen on July 9, 2012


Anonymous on July 10, 2012


Thank you for the review and raising awareness of the topic. I am grateful for your ability to engage in discourse about matters involving female body parts when, if our media is to be believed, so many of our political leaders are not.


Thank you, for your response, this is definitely a movie worth seeing, we also have a few copies of her biography if you are interested.

Anonymous on July 20, 2012


My partner and I were so impressed by this movie. We actually checked it out before you posted it it here. Very moving and definitely a topic that needs more awareness brought to the limelight. I commend the work that Waris is doing, as it is not an easy subject to get people to respond to.
Thank you for suggesting this movie to others!

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