"This Is My Story": The Reclaiming of Girls’ Education Discourses in Malala Yousafzai’s Autobiography

Rosie C Walters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
540 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

The cause of girls’ education in developing countries has received unprecedented attention from international organizations, politicians, transnational corporations, and the media in recent years. Much has been written about the ways in which these seemingly emancipatory campaigns reproduce historical discourses that portray women in former colonies as in need of rescue by the West. However, to date little has been written about the ways in which young women and girls’ education activists represent themselves. In this article I analyze I Am Malala, the autobiography of Pakistani girls’ education activist Malala Yousafzai, written for her own age group. Using a feminist, poststructuralist approach to discourse analysis, it considers the way in which Yousafzai negotiates and challenges discourses around young women, Pakistan, and Islam. I conclude that a truly emancipatory understanding of girls’ rights would look not to the words and policies of powerful organizations but, rather, to young women themselves.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-38
Number of pages16
JournalGirlhood Studies
Volume10
Issue number3
Early online date1 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

Keywords

  • agency
  • development
  • postcolonial
  • power
  • rescue
  • resistance
  • self-representation

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