Attaining Women’s Agency: A Study of Women’s Repression in Women’s Memoir Writing


  • Qudsia Shami
  • Muhammad Ijaz
  • Zarina Akhtar


Agency, Repressive State Apparatuses, Ideological State Apparatuses, Patriarchy, Repression


This research project explores various strategies of claiming women’s agency in diversified backgrounds. It accounts ways of repression that certain social and cultural forces adopt to hamper claims of women’s agency. It examines repressive and ideological state apparatuses operating in different sociopolitical and cultural scenarios. Similarly, it focuses on the contribution of such apparatuses that hinder the women to claim their agency. Theoretical framings of Louis Althusser’s theory of repression seem plausible for content analysis of the selected texts. Althusser foregrounds the role of repressive and ideological and forces that restrict aspirations and freedom of the women in the society. Content analysis of this study is based on two memoirs that
include Reading Lolita in Tehran (2003) by Azar Nafisi and I Am Malala (2013) by Malala Yousafzai. The study finds that religion and family function as ideological state apparatuses in Nafisi’s memoir and the Taliban enact as Repressive state apparatuses in latter’s memoir.


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How to Cite

Qudsia Shami, Muhammad Ijaz, & Zarina Akhtar. (2023). Attaining Women’s Agency: A Study of Women’s Repression in Women’s Memoir Writing. JSSH, 31(2). Retrieved from