Defiance to Phallogocentricism in Soniah Kamal’s Unmarriaegable

  • Eisha tu Razia MPhil Scholar, Air University, Islamabad
  • Maria Farooq Maan, Dr. Assistant professor, Air University, Islamabad


This paper highlights the phallogocentric orientation of post-partition Pakistani society and culture that has perpetually tried to create the illusion of priority and superiority of masculinity over femininity to sustain continued dominance. The phallogocentric gender binarism in Soniah Kamal’s Unmarriageable is explored and dismantled with the help of various female characters of the novel like Alys Binnat and Qitty Binnat who are seen making their mark in emerging world by working as a teacher and bloggers or columnist deviating from the long held gender codes of behavior. By using the framework of “Phallogocentricism” a neologism in deconstruction theory coined by Jacques Derrida to criticize binary thinking imposed by patriarchal culture, this paper tends to show the defiance on the part of modern women of Pakistan paving their ways from male influential society through the force of education. Education no longer makes them vulnerable to men, the protagonist Alys Binnat being a teacher urges the younger generations to realize that education is more important than seeking a suitable suitor and that they might have a life beyond marriage and children.

Keywords: Phallogocentricism, Deconstruction, Unmarriageable, Patriarchal Society


Addicott, J. (2012). Phallogocentrism: The politics of binaries and strategic writing in female/male ethnography. https://jameseaddicott. wordpress. com/2012/06/14/phallogocentrism-the-politicsof-binaries-and-strategic-writingin-femalemale-ethnography/>Acessoem, 20, 2019.
Barthes, R., 1979a, Elements of semiology, transl. A. Leavers, Smith & Hill, New York.
Derrida, J. (1978). Writing and difference. University of Chicago Press.
Derrida, J., 1981, Positins, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL
Derrida, J., 1985, The ear of the other: Otobiography, transference, translatin: Texts and discussions with Jacques Derrida, Schocken Book, New York.
Hina, N. A. Z., Manzoor, F., Bukhari, R., Hanif, Z., & Ayesha, R. A. U. F. (2016).
Demythologizing women subjugation: Rethingking Arundhati Roy’s God of Small Things and
Sara Sulehri’s Meatless Days through Derridean’s Theory of Phallogocentrism. International EJournal of Advances in Social Sciences, 2(5), 554-559.
Hooti, N. (2013). williamshakepeare's hamlet: Adeconstructivestudy .international research journal of applied and basic sciences , 3903-3909.
Kamal, S. (2019). Unmarriageable: A Novel. Ballantine Books.
Sandelowski, M. (2000). Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Sampling, Data Collection, and Analysis Techniques in Mixed-Method Studies. Research In Nursing & Health, 23(3), 246-255. doi: 10.1002/1098-240x(200006)23:3<246::aid-nur9>;2-h
How to Cite
RAZIA, Eisha tu; MAAN, Maria Farooq. Defiance to Phallogocentricism in Soniah Kamal’s Unmarriaegable. University of Chitral Journal of Linguistics & Literature, [S.l.], v. 6, n. I, p. 121-132, mar. 2022. ISSN 2663-1512. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 26 mar. 2023. doi: