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200 Women is a book and exhibition inspired by a belief that you can’t empower women without listening to their stories. Our subsequent idea was to persuade two hundred women in different parts of the world - whether they be rich or poor, black or white, educated or uneducated, famous or unknown - to sit or stand in front of a plain sheet of fabric and to be photographed and filmed while answering five fundamental questions.
Our goal was not to make a book about just successful and powerful women; those stories are important, but we wanted diversity, and above all, authenticity. Two hundred 'real women', with 'real stories'.
Nahid Shahalimi was born in Kabul, Afghanistan. She holds degrees in international politics and Southeast Asian studies, and in fine arts from Champlain College and Concordia University in Canada. She is the founder and chairwoman of the Hope Foundation for Women and Children of Afghanistan and supports of UNICEF Germany. In 2009, she launched We, the Women – Germany, a book and travelling exhibition that honours strong, inspirational German women. In 2017, her book Wo Mut die Seele trägt: Wir Frauen in Afghanistan profiled women and girls in Afghanistan.