Lit. NotesShort Story

Elements of retrospective autobiography in Sara Sulehri’s “The Property of Woman”

The writer’s knowledge about the two wars i.e., the wars of 1965 and 1971 seems to have come from her father, Z.A. Sulehri, an outstanding personality, seasoned columnist, a prominent author, and a keen observer of Pakistani politics. He has also authored a book on the life of Quaid- e- Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah titled “My Leader”. Other autobiographical elements are the political allusions to Zia-ul-Haq, former dictator and President of Pakistan, and general Niazi who led the army in the war of 1971. General Niazi has been termed in the story as ‘Tiger Niazi’.

Another autobiographical element in the story is Ifat Sulehri whom the narrator meets on the roadside in Gulberg. Ifat in the story has been referred to as a cousin of the writer but actually, she is her sister.

Gulberg V is yet another autobiographical element discussed in the story. Sara’s father Z.A. Suleri used to live there; perhaps it is his house where she met Halima. Minute details of the roads and park cum gardens of Gulberg also show that the writer has spent quite a time there.

Note: For more details see the critical analysis and the discussion on the title of the story)

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