The original essay appeared in two instalments in Tehzib-e Niswan (Lahore) (23 and 30 March 1899). It was then published with a biographical introduction by the journal’s editor, Muhammadi Begum, in a book entitled Hayat-e Ashraf (Lahore: Imambara Sayyida Mubarak Begum, n.d.). The essay has been translated from this source with a biographical introduction to …
Bibi Ashraf, or Ashrafunnissa Begum (1840-1903), was a teacher at the Victoria Girls’ School in Lahore from the late 1880s until shortly before her death in 1903. She also wrote poetry and essays for a local Urdu women’s magazine, Tehzib-e Niswan. Among these was a rare autobiographical account of how, as a young Muslim girl in north India, she sought to educate herself.
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