BANGLADESH / BANLADESH

In Southern Asia, mostly flat alluvial plain; hilly in Southeast. 144,00 km2 (slightly < IA) 55 % arable.

Capital Dhaka (8.5M)
Population 154M (1066/ km2)
Life expectancy 63 years
HIV/AIDS <.1%
Literacy 43%
Lang(s) Bangla (official, also known as Bengali), English
Religions Muslim (83%), Hindu (16%), other (1%)
Ethnic Groups Bengali (98%), other (2%)
Gov’t Parliamentary democracy
GDP/cap $1,500
PCVs 1998-2006; education, youth development, other (TTD: 280)
Nat’l holiday Independence Day, 26 March (1971)


Focus word for 2010 - “Justice”

Bengali: bichar (bee-char)


Books

A History of Bangladesh
by Willem van Schendel
Book Description
Bangladesh is a new name for an old land whose history is little known to the wider world. This is an eloquent introduction to a fascinating country and its resilient and inventive people.
An eloquent introduction to a fascinating country and its resilient and inventive people.


Kids' Books

Rickshaw Girl
by Perkins, Mitali; illustrated by Jamie Hogan.
Watertown, MA : Charlesbridge, c2007.
91 p. : ill. ; 23 cm.

CCBC (Cooperative Children's Book Center Choices 2008)
Ten-year-old Naima lives in Bangladesh, where her father earns a meager living as a rickshaw driver. With the best of intentions, Naima tries pedaling her father’s new rickshaw, determined to prove she can handle the job and help out. Instead, she accidentally crashes the vehicle. Burdened with guilt despite her family’s reassurances, Naima decides to turn to something she knows she can do—painting and design—to help pay for the rickshaw repairs. Since it goes against her cultural traditions for a woman or girl to work for money, she takes the plan she had for pedaling the rickshaw—posing as a boy—and puts it to a different use. Determined to convince the owner of the new rickshaw repair shop in the neighboring village to hire her to decorate rickshaws, Naima discovers—to her astonishment—that the owner is a woman. She opened her business with the support of a loan from the Woman’s Bank, and she offers Naima the opportunity to work—as a girl—and develop her talents. Mitali Perkins introduces Bangla culture and customs in the context of an appealing, child-centered story that also highlights changing attitudes and times. An author’s note provides additional information on microfinance—the system that has enabled small businesses throughout Bangladesh to start up and thrive, including many run by women. Ages 7-10.
© Cooperative Children’s Book Center. Reprinted with permission.


Music

Sabina Yasmin
Various Songs


Films

Swopnodanay (Golam Rabbany Biplob)


Recipes

Makher Taukari/ Fish Curry
Saak-er Ghanto/Vegetarian Delight
Shemai/Vermicelli Treat