Shadow of the Father Evidence of Electra Complex in Benazir Bhutto’s Daughter of the East Section Articles


Isma Tariq


This paper aims at exploring the symptoms of Electra complex in Benazir Bhutto through her autobiography Daughter of the East (1988). As developed by Freud, psychoanalysis provides an insight into the conflicts that are believed to lie at the roots of people’s problems. His discovery of the unconscious mind led him to believe that all dreams, jokes, slips of tongues, thoughts, behavior and action have hidden meanings, and suggest the psychic structures of the mind shape the personality. The researcher uses this theory to explore the symptoms of Electra complex in Benazir’s personality. This paper proves that Daughter of the East contains evidence of certain symptoms which prove that Benazir suffered from Electra complex. Specific strategies of narratological analysis are selected for analyzing and interpreting textual evidence. This paper throws light on the deep-seated anxieties that exerted continuous pressure on Benazir’s mind. Through this analysis, the researcher has found symptoms of Electra complex in Benazir Bhutto. Benazir was so deeply in love with her father that she was unable to focus on her own life in her autobiography. She was obsessed with her love for her father and revered him as a saint. Benazir even developed a sense of competition with her siblings for the love of her father. The researcher argues that Benazir recreated her traumatic past, her father’s images, and his memories by writing her autobiography.