top of page

Qandeel Baloch: The Woman Who Dared to Live Out Loud in a Censored World

History tells us that wherever traditions hold sway, the onus of family morality falls on the woman. Pakistan, as we saw with Qandeel Baloch's tragic murder, isn't kind to women who take charge of their lives. It's a bit harsher towards women compared to some other places. There's still this idea that feminism is only for women who can't find husbands or that it's a tool from the West to mess up Muslim families. It's sad that it was a big deal in the news that Qandeel's father wanted her brother punished for her murder.

Can people really be killed because of choices others don't like? Qandeel Baloch was a social media celebrity from Pakistan known for her bold and provocative content on platforms like Facebook and Instagram. She garnered attention for challenging societal norms regarding women's behavior and expectations, often posting content that was considered controversial in the conservative Pakistani society. She openly expressed herself, addressing issues of female empowerment and individual freedom, which led to both support and criticism from various quarters. She was tragically killed by her brother in what was reported as an honor killing. The motive behind her murder was primarily attributed to her social media presence, which was perceived as dishonorable by her brother and some members of her family due to the nature of her posts and public image. Her death brought attention to the deep-seated issues of honor-based violence and the societal pressures faced by women who challenge traditional norms in Pakistan.

I believe that women today are caught between old traditions and new freedoms. They're taking risks to live life on their terms. More and more women are making choices that clash with old beliefs. Things like marrying for love, pursuing careers, leaving bad marriages, running away, or choosing different family setups can upset families and communities. These choices are seen as damaging their honor. Over thousands of honor killings happen each year in Pakistan. Beyond being perceived as damaging to family honor, women's choices challenge the established order, threatening the status quo. This fear of change and the loss of control prompts extreme actions that are justified under the guise of preserving honor.The people doing these killings, like fathers, brothers, or husbands, feel hurt in their pride. They're supported by village leaders who think killing is okay to protect honor. But it's not just about controlling women. These murders happen for many reasons: money problems, unhappy marriages, even if a woman is raped. It's about keeping things the way they've always been.

The role of social media in Qandeel Baloch's story was pivotal. She became a well-known figure solely through her presence on platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, rather than through traditional avenues like film, television, or music. Her persona, 'Qandeel Baloch,' was essentially created and popularized on social media. She gained attention by openly challenging societal norms, especially regarding sexuality, which was unheard of for many in Pakistan. Qandeel's case highlights how social media has the power to bring transgressive behavior into the public eye on an unprecedented scale. In a pre-social media era, someone like Qandeel might have remained unknown. Her journey from a small village to national and international recognition solely through social media illustrates its ability to transcend societal barriers and influence mainstream media and public attention while traditional media struggles to catch up with this new reality. But at the same time, it makes me think was social media the major reason due to which Qandeel got killed as social media amplified her visibility and controversies.

Qandeel Baloch's life showed how media can challenge norms, but also revealed the resistance against unconventional voices. As her legacy echoes through time, it urges reflection on the evolving nature of fame, freedom of expression, and the responsibilities of both media and society in embracing diverse voices without fear or prejudice.Her story highlights the clash between traditional expectations and individual expression. It's a reminder for us to respect diverse voices and navigate the changing landscape of fame and freedom of speech with empathy and understanding.

|Qandeel will be remembered for her brief rise to fame through the unregulated platform of social media

17 views5 comments


Your blog talks very nicely summarises what it's like to live in Pakistan as a woman, especially if they want to do things differently. Qandeel Baloch's story is a perfect example of the challenges women face when they try to be independent. You have a done a good job at explaining how traditions and new freedoms clash, and how we really need society to change. Reading this made me frustrated that things are not changing quickly. It also gives a bit of hope that talking about these issues might make a difference.


Your blog post offers a powerful and thought-provoking perspective on the complexities surrounding women's rights, societal norms, and the impact of social media in Pakistan, particularly through the tragic story of Qandeel Baloch. The way you've woven together the elements of tradition, honor, and the transformative role of social media in challenging these conventions is both insightful and deeply moving. What I find especially impactful is the manner in which you have highlighted the stark contrast between emerging individual freedoms and entrenched traditional values. The story of Qandeel Baloch serves as a poignant example of the dangers that women often face when they attempt to assert their independence and challenge societal norms in conservative settings. Her life and untimely death…


This insightful blog of the tragic life of Qandeel Baloch captures the intricate relationship between power dynamics, women's choices, and tradition in Pakistani society. The blog highlights the deadly effects of honor-based violence and bravely explores the harsh reality that women must confront when defying social norms. The inquiry concerning the extent to which social media has contributed to Qandeel's increased visibility brings important issues regarding the dual nature of online platforms. In summary, the piece fosters contemplation regarding the dynamic terrain of liberty, celebrity, and the obligation of the media and public to accept and comprehend a range of viewpoints. How can society actively seek to undermine damaging norms and guarantee the safety and empowerment of women who defy…


Freedom for women and especially the premise of that freedom are the most sensitive topics to persist in this society, their actions quantified on standards of honour set by the men of the family. Reading your blog brought back all the frustration and confusion I felt when I first heard of the heartbreaking demise of Qandeel Baloch, your blog poignantly sheds light on the deeply ingrained issue of honour killings in this society. She was a speaker for many and not just a result of the unconventional media content she would post, her sense of freedom exceeded what any women could have imagined yet the same media that brought her story to light is unfortunately the one that brings her…


Qandeel Baloch's story is a stark reminder of the challenges faced by women who dare to live life on their own terms, especially in societies where traditional beliefs hold strong. It's disheartening to witness the tragic consequences of her bold choices and the clash between old traditions and new freedoms. The impact of social media on her life is undeniable, amplifying her visibility and sparking important conversations about freedom of expression. However, it also sheds light on the resistance against unconventional voices. Qandeel's legacy prompts us to reflect on the evolving nature of fame and the responsibilities of both media and society in embracing diverse voices. Her life may have been brief, but her story serves as a poignant call…

Post: Blog2_Post
bottom of page