Minnesota Historical Society

Daughters of Arraweelo

$ 17.95

Stories of Somali Women

Author Ayaan Adan

Minnesota Historical Society Press (January 18, 2022)


Somali women tell their stories, sharing experiences of love, war, displacement, family, identity, and everyday life. 

After civil war broke out in Somalia in 1991, thousands of families fled the country and sought asylum all over the world. Many Somali women carried the responsibility through this catastrophic time for finding safe passage and new homes for their families. Minnesota now holds the largest number of Somali immigrants of any state. Despite many obstacles, Somali women have built new communities here and become business owners, authors, scholars, activists, and change makers. Unfortunately, the rich stories of Somali women are often reduced to clichés of devastation and trauma--or tokenization and exceptionalism. Rarely are these women depicted with the multi-layered humanity they deserve.

Daughters of Arraweelo presents, in the women's own words, the stories of fourteen mothers and daughters, teachers and social workers, scientists and medical professionals, lawyers and politicians--all Somali women who have made their marks on Minnesota. 

Arraweelo, a legendary queen of Somalia, was a powerful eccentric feminist, and her name is used as an insulting nickname for assertive Somali girls. In reclaiming the insult, this book celebrates the complicated stories and the brilliance of Somali women.

Author information

Ayaan Adan is a user experience designer, author, and activist based in Minneapolis.


  • This title is also available at your favorite e-book vendor.
  • 240 pages
  • Paperback
  • 5.5x8.5 inches
  • ISBN: 9781681341835

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