Writing back and/as activism

Refiguring victimhood and remapping the shooting of Malala Yousafzai

Authored by: Rachel Fox

The Routledge Companion to Pakistani Anglophone Writing

Print publication date:  September  2018
Online publication date:  October  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138745520
eBook ISBN: 9781315180618
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter focuses primarily on Malala Yousafzai’s memoir I Am Malala (2013). I argue that her personal narrative galvanises her political campaign and presents a nuanced portrait of her multifaceted identity, challenging homogenising stereotypes of Muslim women within the context of the War on Terror. Additionally, Yousafzai’s memoir, as an act of writing back, allows her to reframe the events of her shooting in light of her political convictions. Although her identifier as a victim might diminish her other agential positions – as a spokeswoman and an activist – I argue that Yousafzai refigures her victimhood to further support her feminist campaign.

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