Malala Yousafzhai’s autobiography was released this week, an especially fitting time ahead of Friday’s UN International Day of the Girl Child. Nominated for this year’s Nobel Peace Prize, Malala is the teenage Pakistani activist known for her courageous determination to attend school. Last year, a group of Taliban brutes stormed her school bus and, after calling out her name, they shot her in the head at point blank range. Miraculously, Malala survived, but around the world, so many more young girls will not survive, and though it may not be a bullet that will take them, the global neglect that will allow them to wither and die, is surely as deadly. At every stage of life, females are still at risk in places like Afghanistan and India, both of which were named among the “world’s most dangerous countrys [sic] in which to be born a woman.” And it is not just the lack of medical care and outrageously high maternal mortality rates that account for the challenges that confront women and girls, it is rape, persistent violence and neglect that will stalk them throughout their often short lives. In India, the UN estimates that girls are 75 % more likely than boys, to die before the age of five. . That statistic alone is proof enough that, at least in India, females are still considered as worthless as yesterday’s bread.