23-year-old singer/rapper Sosan Firooz is the first female MC to debut in her native land of Afghanistan. Her homeland frowns upon any woman who chooses to take the stage, yet Firooz has overcome the obstacles (and being shunned by some of her relatives) to express herself and urge for a peaceful Afghanistan. "I remember while we were in Iran, we were called 'dirty Afghans' and told to go to the back of the line at the baker," Firooz recalls.
Her songs are littered with messages directly to her native countrymen, urging them to stay in their homelaNd. Those who leave, she raps, will only get "jobs washing dishes or working at a car wash." Armed with a staccato, stop-and-start style, she is all hip-hop as she drops lines like, "They will want to kiss the dust of their homeland / What is the result of Afghans being refugees in Iran and Pakistan?" Firooz, who raps in Dari, one of Afghanistan's two main languages, has only released her work on YouTube, yet in doing so she has put herself and those she loves in danger. She is still searching for an audience amongst her native Afghans, but by breaking traditional rules for women within the country, she is sure to stand out and directly come under the ire of detractors.
But such is true of a culture that was birthed from railing against the systematic status quo. Firooz has the support of her mother and father, who equally "want an end to all cruelty against women and children."