REMEMBERING HAYAT SHARARA
. . . Thus, it was in the historic city of Najaf that Hayat came to this world, and it was in Baghdad, the city of peace, that her life came to an end.
In the face of continuous harassment, Hayat felt she could no longer continue in her teaching job. She applied for retirement but her request was turned down. Due to her prolonged absence from college, she was considered to have resigned and accordingly deprived of her benefits for 26 years of service.
That stifling climate left her with no alternative but to think of leaving her country. Although Iraqis historically stuck to their soil, conditions deteriorated to a point where migration became the aspiration of every one.
Hayat appealed to the President [Saddam Hussein] for permission to travel along with her two daughters. The authorities returned the appeal to her and instructed her to rewrite it in a submissive tone. She dismissed that as an insult and refused to do so.
As a result of the economic embargo, intellectuals lived in isola-
24 BANIPAL 63 – AUTUMN/WINTER 2018