In patriarchal societies, women are traditionally subjugated and suppressed in one way or another. Men are privileged and kept at the center. They speak, express, and dream while benefiting from the autonomy provided to them by the phallogocentric system. By contrast, women are marginalized. Patriarchal writers define women as weak, fragile, helpless, docile, submissive, and emotional. However, this paper reveals that in Daniyal Mueenuddin’s “Nawabdin Electrician” and Abrar-ul-Haq’s song “Chamkeeli,” regardless of a change in times and “gender performativity,” Pakistani male writers continue to stigmatize women. This study shows that although gender roles are changing, women remain subjugated. My paper claims that whereas women were previously portrayed as submissive, docile, suppressed, uncritical, and mindlessly silent, in these two more recent texts women are represented as uncontrollable, hypersexual, dangerous, mad, violent, hysterically dominating, and madly authoritative. I argue that these recent portrayals do not help or emancipate Pakistani women. In 2019, Advocate Rana Adnan Asghar filed a petition against Haq’s song in the Lahore Civil Court, declaring it a scurrilous attack on men’s integrity. My study, however, reveals that Haq has depicted incapacitated men in contrast to strong women, as a way to prove that women’s emancipation is a potential threat to patriarchy. Thus, rather than demeaning men, Haq’s depiction of a madly uncontrollable woman is more critical of women than of men. This implies that Pakistan’s dominant patriarchal familial and social structures suppress women more in order to protect men from disgrace. My study reveals that in the time between these texts (2009 to 2019), no significant change has occurred because gender discrimination persists in the works of Pakistani men. This article offers a dismantling of these recent prejudiced female stereotypes in order to achieve a more emancipatory future for women.
"Triumphant or Trapped Pakistani Women? A Feminist Critique of Mueenuddin’s “Nawabdin Electrician” and Haq’s Song “Chamkeeli”,"
Journal of International Women's Studies: Vol. 25:
7, Article 8.
Available at: https://vc.bridgew.edu/jiws/vol25/iss7/8